Evergreen artist Maria Valentina Sheets’ solo exhibition will be displayed until Jan. 9 at Valkarie Gallery, 445 S. Saulsbury St., Lakewood. The gallery is open from 4-7 p.m. Wednesdays, 4-9:30 p.m. Thursdays, 4-8:30 p.m. Fridays, noon-6 p.m. Saturdays and noon-5 p.m. Sundays.
“Sinners, Saints and Fools,” a solo exhibition of kiln-fired, painted stained glass by Evergreen artist Maria Valentina Sheets will be at Valkarie Gallery in Lakewood from until Jan. 9.
Sheets of Evergreen will feature mostly portrait work, with all works being backlit in the gallery. The works range from five to 50 pounds.
“I’ve got approximately 20 pieces in it — pretty significant, pretty detailed,” she said.
One of her pieces is titled “The Void” and is a commentary on fame. The piece is meant to push people to “think about who you’re defending if you can’t recognize them,” Sheets said.
An excerpt from the description of Sheet’s exhibit describes it this way: “In the exhibit, `Sinners, Saints and Fools’ … artist Maria Valentina Sheets pushes the once traditional medium of iconographic, kiln-fired, stained-glass panel portraiture towards a contemporary homage by placing characters amidst the symbolic, often chaotic, detritus of modern environments.”
Sheets, an artist and conservator, has experience working with high volume and high profile art collections. From being a contract conservator at The Museum of Biblical Art in Dallas after a devastating fire to working with the personal collections of George Bush, Sheets has had many unique experiences throughout her career.
Dipping into the world of stained glass in 2006, Sheets began to dabble with the art on her own and then eventually took a class. Now, her work is featured in many churches and buildings that will stand for years to come.
“I think stained glass offered me a challenge and a refresher career-wise,” Sheets said.
Sheets’ work has been featured in Stained Glass Magazine, and she recently designed a window for the Historic Vernon A.M.E. Church in Tulsa memorializing a violent race massacre that took place in 1921.
Misty Keasler, a fellow visual artist and friend for nearly two decades, appreciates all the artistic endeavors Sheets has made over the years.
“She’s such a fascinating person to know. Anything she gets interested in she becomes a master at,” Keasler said.
Even though Keasler’s medium is photography, she still recognizes the skill that Sheets brings to the table.
“She is by far one of the most talented people I’ve ever met,” Keasler said.
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