Wednesday, 25 August 2010
The landscape I am most compelled to paint is the city or more specifically the fringes of the city. I spend a lot of time wandering around the vast industrial parks that have become a common part of our environment. I am attracted to the rich visual experiences these places offer. As a painter, the sensuality of the forms and the play of light and shadow, as well as the pure enjoyment of laying on paint engage me. I find beauty in these arcane structures, even if it their beauty is of an unconventional nature.
Valeri Larko has had numerous solo and group exhibitions of her paintings throughout the New York metropolitan area. Notable solo exhibits include The New Jersey State Museum, Trenton, Safe-T-Gallery, Brooklyn, NY, Bronx River Art Center, Art Guild of Rahway, NJ, Johnson and Johnson Corporate Headquarters Gallery, New Brunswick, NJ and the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, Summit, NJ. Notable group exhibits include The Jersey City Museum, The Morris Museum, The National Academy of Sciences in Washington, DC, Aljira, a center for contemporary Art, Newark NJ, William Paterson University, Wayne, NJ, MB Modern in New York City and the Bruton Street Gallery in London, England.
In the fall of 2000 Valeri Larko was awarded a major mural commission from New Jersey Transit and the New Jersey State Council on the arts for the Secaucus Transfer Station. She painted four murals for their north mezzanine. Completed in August of 2003, the Secaucus Transfer Station is the largest train station in the state of New Jersey.
Valeri was awarded a public art commission in 2004. This time by the city of Summit to create two Fragmented Glass Murals for the Bus Shelter located in front of the city’s train station. Other honors include grants from both the George Sugarman Foundation for painting and the New York Foundation for the Arts Strategic Opportunity Grant in 2006, an Artist in Residence Fellowship from the Newark Museum in 2002, a New Jersey State Council on the Arts Fellowship Grant in 1992 and several awards from the National Academy of Design in New York City. Ms. Larko’s work is in the collections of the Jersey City Museum, The Montclair Museum, The New Jersey State Museum, Johnson and Johnson, Rutgers University and a number of other significant organisations.
Educated at the Du Cret School of the Arts, Plainfield, NJ and the Arts Students League, New York City, In 2004, Valeri moved from her long time residence in Summit, NJ to an artist loft building in New Rochelle, New York. Presently she holds the position of Director of the Tomasulo Gallery at Union County College, Cranford, New Jersey, a position she has held since1996. She is also a painting instructor at the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, Summit, NJ and teaches international landscape painting.