Curtis R. Harley Art Gallery presents “BURD BRAIN” by Marius Valdes

Curtis R. Harley Art Gallery, sponsored by the University of South Carolina Upstate,  announce s“Burd Brain”,  an exhibiton of paintings, garphics and illustrations by Marius Valdes. The exhibition opens on Feb. 24 and continues through Mar. 27, with a gallery talk and reception at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 27. The exhibit and events are free and open to the public.

Burd Brain” is a children’s story exploring the ideas of social anxiety and introversion. These themes will be explored through an illustrated picture book and accompanying exhibition of related artwork. This collection of mixed media paintings represents my creative process of “writing with pictures”. I am a trained artist, not a writer, so I often begin my narratives by drawing ideas and then crafting the written text to the images. Drawing helps me to be more creative and get my ideas out quickly. Working on larger canvases helps me to have time to contemplate my ideas while I color the drawings. The original art for the children’s book will be produced entirely using digital production on an iPad as a challenge to myself to learn a new skill and creative process. The book should be ready in Fall of 2020 and will be distributed to schools and libraries across the state of South Carolina. The project is funded by a Creative and Performing Arts Grant from the Provost’s office at The University of South Carolina. Artist, Marius Valdes. For more information:

Marius Valdes is an artist currently based in Columbia, South Carolina. He is an Associate Professor in studio art concentrating on design and illustration at The University of South Carolina. He lives in Forest Acres, South Carolina with his wife Beth, daughter Emma, and very lazy but adorable dog, Mary. Valdes received his BFA in Graphic Design from the University of Georgia and his MFA in Visual Communication from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2005. Valdes has been recognized by design publications such as HOWPrintCommunication ArtsCreative QuarterlySTEP, and industry competitions including American Illustration, AIGA InShow, AIGA SEED Awards, and The South Carolina Advertising Federation Addy Awards. Valdes’ work has been featured in several books about contemporary graphic design and illustration. He has participated in solo and group exhibitions internationally. Valdes has presented at academic conferences about design and illustration related topics. In 2017, Valdes completed a one year residency as the first visual Artist in Residence at the award-winning and innovative Richland Library.

We are pleased to showcase the work of Marius Valdes, a respected and popular designer and illustrator and author. This is an excellent exhibit to encourage young designers to move outside the margins and seek new venues for their ideas. I especially am pleased to bring the concept of this book to Spartanburg where I hope it will be recognized for its signifigance to creating a better environment for children. Jane Nodine, University Gallery Director.


About The Curtis R. Harley Gallery 

The Curtis R. Harley Gallery is one of three galleries supported by University of South Carolina Upstate, along with a growing collection of monumental outdoor sculpture. The gallery program is dedicated to original works of art and events that support our mission to offer exhibitions and activities that cultivate an understanding of art as a discipline, the relationship of art to life, and the historical and societal role art plays for the educated individual. Free and open to the public, the gallery presents exhibitions from the University’s permanent collection, and features the work of Upstate students and faculty. Harley Gallery is located in the Performing Arts Center and is staffed by students as part of experiential learning while earning academic credit. Gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday – Friday. For more information, contact Jane Nodine, gallery director, [email protected] or phone 864-503-5838.