Valentin was born in Rio de Janeiro, that sunny city at the beach very well known for its sexy men and it was there that he started painting as a young child. In university he earned his degree in psychology and after he studied both drawing and painting. Later on he left Brazil and moved to Portugal in 1990. As his artistic style developed, working with oil, watercolour, acrylic and pencil he began to focus on mostly reds and blues to build the groundwork for his pieces that regularly depict the male figure.
VV: A mixture of a few of my friends here in Porto and also from the wonderful world of the internet. I sometimes find inspiration from the sexy and crazy photos I have seen online.
BB: Sweet. You have some sexy friends there mate! I have been following your work for a while now and my main question is – what is your reasoning behind using only the two colors red & blue as seen in all of your earlier works???
VV: I love red and blue and you can create many combinations with just these two colors. Working with it is very funny to me, as if each drawing would be a new challenge – I began to paint with just these two colors because they are my favorites. My theory is that in some way they represent the male and female sex, each with their own distinct masculine and feminine traits and when mixed they become sort of a third gender. I can paint a very masculine guy with a full beard and fill it with flowers to express how each human being can subtly manifest traits of either sex.
VV: Yes this is true. Later on I add the other colors with the details, but only in small amounts to complete the visual story. Sometimes I finish with overpainting the background in another color. I have been experimenting with yellow recently, but the basic drawing or painting underneath begins with my two basic colors – each image always starts the same way with only red and blue. You can also see some darker colors like in the figure‘s hair or their beard – these variations are the result of the mixing of blue and red. I think of it as like the blurring of the two genders to form a hybrid. These two colors represent both perceived boundaries and fluidity of gender within my art. The figures in my paintings are presented in a very uninhibited and natural state and by doing this I try to show the viewer that it is ok to go with this flow.
BB: From these newer pieces that you shared with us for this article, my favorites are the two kings and the finger in the doughnut hole.
VV: Yes, I like the sweet things too.
Artist‘s site: vilelavalentinartwork.blogspot.pt
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