Valerie's Gallery is a website dedicated to showcasing Valerie's artistic endeavors. Valerie is the daughter of Susan and Isaac and sister of Daniel and Angel. She is a treasure in our family and she loves painting and other kinds of artistic expression.
Valerie's exposure to art was significantly limited in her middle and high school years because her other academic abilities were best served in a self contained special needs classroom. Valerie has Down Syndrome.
She is an not an artistic genius, but she finds great joy in the paintings and other artwork she creates. Her love of painting was uncovered by a special art teacher who came to her classroom one day in her senior year in high school. This one day was the only exposure to art she received, outside of "coloring sheets", in her entire middle and high school years, a total of over 900 school days. When she brought her "Happy Face" painting home, we of course hung it on the wall. Then, every time we had guests over, she would point out her painting and say, "I did it myself!"
Because of that experience, We began to look for opportunities to allow her to express herself artistically. The first real opportunity to do this was in conjunction with the Down Syndrome Association of Central Florida's Entrepreneur Academy. Valerie participated in the first cohort of young people with Down's looking to turn their passions into a small business. This is where Valerie's Gallery was born. Since then, we have been blessed with a new partner, Mimi, who coaches and guides Valerie in her work. Our journey began in 2015. We are proof that the wait is worth it and that you never have to give up on your dreams. Thank you for stopping by to learn our story.
“The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.” - Pablo Picasso