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Born in New York City in 1957. Valerie received her B.A. in Philosophy from Harvard University, her M.F.A. in Painting from Brooklyn College and her Ph.D. in Art History at the Graduate Center of City University of New York. She also studied with Francis Cunningham at the Brooklyn Museum Art School, the Art Students League of New York, and the New Brooklyn School of Life Drawing, Painting and Sculpture. Valerie's practice is centered on the "color spot" as developed in the teaching of Charles Hawthorne, whose school on Cape Cod in the 1910’s and 1920’s was rallying point for a direct, painterly approach. A color spot is a localized choice based on relationships of hue, intensity and value. The whole painting consists of such choices; rather than “coloring in” a linear map, the color choices build form in and of themselves. The softness or the hardness of edge, the abstract rhythms within the composition, reveal themselves not in a preliminary drawing, but in the process of painting color spot by color spot outward in an ever widening area. It is an intensely intimate and observing way of working. The picture, as a representation of objects in space, coheres through the very means by which it is painted.