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Reinaldo's Profile

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Born in Bethlehem, Pa. in the early 1970‘s. Reinaldo Valentin grew up in the midst of The Bethlehem Steel with it’s iron ore, blast furnaces, and freight trains filling the landscape of his youth. In the 80’s, graffiti and hip hop culture started making its influences on him. As a young boy learning to draw, B-boys and tags became his first taste of creative expression. But, as the early days of break-dancing, graffiti, and rap starting to die down, the visual arts took a back seat to music. He began playing guitar throughout his teens and early twenties. But, art never left him and in his mid 20’s, started painting again. Soon after, he started working as a mold maker for a garden art and pottery manufacturer, learning the trade on the job. Working with professional sculptors and mold makers, he learned how to sculpt, make molds, and cast in plaster and concrete. At this time, he was also learning how to paint in watercolor…

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  • Male
  • Born on February 17
  • Joined September 3, 2010

Favorite materials

mixed medium, recycled, salvaged, paper, wood, metal, plastic

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About

Born in Bethlehem, Pa. in the early 1970‘s. Reinaldo Valentin grew up in the midst of The Bethlehem Steel with it’s iron ore, blast furnaces, and freight trains filling the landscape of his youth. In the 80’s, graffiti and hip hop culture started making its influences on him. As a young boy learning to draw, B-boys and tags became his first taste of creative expression. But, as the early days of break-dancing, graffiti, and rap starting to die down, the visual arts took a back seat to music. He began playing guitar throughout his teens and early twenties. But, art never left him and in his mid 20’s, started painting again. Soon after, he started working as a mold maker for a garden art and pottery manufacturer, learning the trade on the job. Working with professional sculptors and mold makers, he learned how to sculpt, make molds, and cast in plaster and concrete. At this time, he was also learning how to paint in watercolor. But, to continue sculpting and painting as a hobby,
it was getting too expensive. At one point, his supplies were almost gone and with no more funds to buy anymore, he remembered the graffiti influence of his youth. With some spray paint and scrap materials in his garage, he began working on a new approach to his art. Drawing on the spray paint influence in graffiti and inspired by the rusted metal and weathered wood of the Bethlehem Steel he grew up around, he began experimenting with found objects and spray paint, forming his unique style.

Artist Statement

I am a self taught artist, and, somewhat of an outsider, but I wouldn’t call my work Outsider Art. My work is a unique meld of styles and mediums while always maintaining a distinct and cohesive body of work. Drawing on a range of influences such as abstract minimalism, found object art, and expressionism, as well as, graphic design and graffiti. Using mostly found objects, wood, metal, plastics, and glass as the building blocks for my pieces both sculptural and painted works. I use a mixed medium pellet of spray paint, acrylic, graphite, and marker, while building layers of materials to create a sense of sculptural depth and texture to my paintings.


STREET v.s. GALLERY

I enjoy working in two worlds: the gallery/studio world and the street art world. The one is a focused and controlled space; the other a world of change and unexpected encounters.


INSPIRATION AND SUBJECT MATTER

My inspiration comes, in part, from my view of the state of the human heart: frailty, straight, apathy, hope, and malice. These themes seem to reveal themselves again and again in my work. But, a lot of what I do is just fun and not that serious. I believe that all art is filtered through an artists’ world view. For me, my subject matter is filtered through my Christian faith.

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