Valyntina is a multi-genre eco artist living with her wife in Tucson, AZ. She works with paint, ink, Neon, encaustic medium, recycled or repurposed materials and words. She is the author of Honeymoon Shoes (Cathexis Northwest Press Fall 2023) and three poetry chapbooks, the tête-bêche, Fever Dream/ Take Heart (Cathexis Northwest Press 2020) and In Our Now (Finishing Line Press 2022). You’ll find her work in, Beyond Queer Words, Genre: Urban Arts, Impermanent Earth, The Journal, Lana Turner, The Night Heron Barks, Querencia, Ran Off with the Star Bassoon, Sunspot, and The Wardrobe. Find her at valyntinagrenier.com or Insta @valyntinagrenier.
My ecological and social concerns are global concerns. Our access to life-sustaining resources, and the ways we support each other and our natural world in a scarce environment, are global concerns. I make art that advocates for our planet and all her vulnerable mortals. Radio Ocean is ecological art, Don’t Shoot protests gun violence, Over His Eye is dedicated to racial and gender equality, and Cloud Show | Utopia is inspired by LGBTQIA pride. I am the author of Honeymoon Shoes (Cathexis Northwest Press Fall 2023) and three poetry chapbooks, the tête-bêche, Fever Dream/ Take Heart (Cathexis Northwest Press 2020) and In Our Now (Finishing Line Press 2022).
As a poet, I have always felt the ultimate potential of a poem live, on the air, among people. I’ve been successful at maintaining a consistent and expanding body of visual art in paint, Neon, encaustic medium, and recycled or repurposed materials. Though my visual art and poetry continues to be published in print and online, I would love the space to expand the public practice of my work- to engage in Q and A and perform poetry along with the presentation of visual art.
I was born and raised in the Mojave Desert in Los Angeles County. I moved to North Hollywood and several other places around greater LA after high school. I worked in the food service industry, acted in commercials and music videos, made visual art, music, and poetry, and eventually attended Santa Monica Community College. I moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in the early aughts to continue my formal education. Graduating with a BA in English from UC Berkeley and an MFA in poetry from St. Mary's College of CA, I’m mostly self-taught as a visual artist.
My work continues to be influenced by coastal communities. Radio Ocean, is inspired by my nostalgia for life in Los Angeles in the 90’s when the slogan “reduce reuse recycle” brought consumer impact pollution and abuse of resources into mainstream consciousness. The work repurposes detritus I might have found along the coast or littered on Sunset Boulevard.
Our Mortal Earth (encaustic on pine, 8" x 8” 2020) contains bits of recyclable netting, an impression of an old cassette tape, and bits of stainless steel. The shape of the letter E is from a broken stencil I found littered on a side street off of Fairfax Blvd.
Here is an excerpt from a recent interview for The Journal about my painting process:
The acrylics all came from a desire to be free, to approach the canvas with no preconceived notion of what I was going to make [...] Thinking of our drying planet and the “single use” garbage polluting our waterways and our land I decided to allow layers of paint to dehydrate under various scraps that would usually be tossed in the garbage or recycling bin […] I peel off the scraps and repeat the process until the composition feels fairly balanced, then I go in with brushes, palate knives, pottery tools and paint markers to add depth, definition, and color.
Man-of-War, (site-tailored assemblage, currently 8’ x 3’20” x 22” 2021) is essentially garbage suspended in air. The lightweight hanging sculpture is made of the same debris that pollutes our lands and waterways, cleaned and manipulated PPE, and recyclable and single-use materials we consumed in 2020. To push my desire to reduce and reuse further, I only purchased materials for the hanging structure and paint, some with Culture Hustle’s light-emitting pigments, so certain elements glow in the dark. I’d like to expand the work by including debris that shores up along our waterways and Neon light.
Saint Mary's College of California, MFA, Poetry, 2008.
University of California, Berkeley, BA, 2006.
Santa Monica Community College, 2000 - 2003.
Honeymoon Shoes, Cathexis Northwest Press, Fall 2023.
In Our Now, Finishing Line Press, 2022.
Fever Dream / Take Heart, Cathexis Northwest Press, 2020.
SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS
RANBOW ROOM, Hotel McCoy, Tucson, AZ, 2019 - present.
PRIDE POP-UP, Tiny Town Gallery, Tucson, AZ, 2017.
VALYNTINA GRENIER, G Gallery Houston, TX, 2017.
GIVE LOVE, Café Passé, Tucson, AZ, 2015.
ANOTHER SUNNY DAY IN THE DESERT 2, Bentley’s, Tucson, AZ, 2014.
CLOUDSHOW / UTOPIA, Bentley's, Tucson, AZ, 2013.
EKPHRASIS, Bentley’s, Tucson, AZ, 2012.
PERSON CIRCUS, Café Passé, Tucson, AZ, 2011.
AUTOPOIESIS 1-3, Lanesplitter, Oakland CA, 2008, 2007, 2006.
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
LIGHT! Found:Re Contemporary, Phoenix, AZ, 2023.
INTERGALACTIC OPEN, ShockkBoxx Projects, Hermosa Beach, CA, 2023.
SOFA KING, ShockkBoxx Projects, Hermosa Beach, CA, 2022.
UPCYCLE, Found:Re Contemporary, Phoenix, AZ, 2022.
FOCAL POINTS, Found:Re Contemporary, Phoenix, AZ, 2022.
HAPPENSTANCE, Marin MOCA, Novato, CA, 2021.
INTERSECTIONS OF (-ISMS), Live on Central, Phoenix, AZ, 2016.
ARTELPHX, The Clarendon Hotel, Phoenix, AZ, 2015, 2014.
SideQuest Gallery, Oakland, CA, 2014
FemArts: ART INSTALLATIONS BY WOMEN ARTISTS, Tucson, AZ, 2014.
THE SUNSET ROOM, Lost Coast Culture Machine, Fort Bragg, CA, 2013.
BE MINE, Collaborations between Writers and Artists, University of Arizona Poetry Center, Tucson, AZ, 2012.
WOOD METAL INK PAPER, The Drawing Studio, Tucson, AZ, 2011.
Beyond Words Magazine Is. 36, Berlin, Germany, 2023.
In Our Now, Valyntina Grenier, Finishing Line Press, Georgetown, KY, 2022.
Fever Dream / Take Heart, Valyntina Grenier, Cathexis Northwest Press, Portland, OR, 2020.
The History Worker, Jenny Drai, Black Lawrence Press, NY, 2017.
Wine Dark, Jenny Drai, Black Lawrence Press, NY, 2016.
at the intersection of 3, Jill Darling, Hannah Ensor, and Laura Wetherington, Dancing Girl Press, Chicago, IL, 2014.
Thunderbird, Jane Miller, Copper Canyon Press, Port Townsend, WA, 2013.
Beyond Queer Words: Poetry Edition, February 2023.
Not Ghosts But Spirits Vol. ! Querencia Press, Chicago, IL, 2023.
Querencia, Querencia Press, Chicago, IL, Autumn, 2022.
The Impossible Beast: Poems of Queer Eroticism, Damaged Goods Press, Columbus, GA, 2020.
The Sonoran Desert: A Literary Field Guide, University of Arizona Press, 2016.
Squaw Valley Poetry Anthology, 2005.
Poetry Should Run for Office, Poetry for the People Press, 2004.
SELECTED READINGS AND PRESENTATIONS
Poetry at Found:Re, Found:Re Contemporary, Phoenix, AZ, January, April, 2023.
Northern Arizona Book Fest, Flagstaff, AZ, 2023.
Interrupted By Trains, Splinter Collective, Tucson, AZ, 2022.
Book Soup, West Hollywood, CA, 2020.
Read Local Book Fest, Bookmans, Phoenix, AZ, 2020.
G Gallery, Artist Talk, Q&A and Poetry, G Gallery, Houston, TX, 20117.
Trick House Live, Casa Libre, Tucson, AZ, 2012.
Studio One Reading Series, Oakland, CA, 2009.
Bay Area Poetry Marathon, The Lab, San Francisco CA, 2009.
Back Room Live, Curator/ MC, McNally's Irish Pub, Oakland, CA, 2006-2008.
Poetry After the Storm, University of California, Berkeley, CA, 2005.
Vagina Monologues, Director/ Producer/ Performer, Santa Monica Community College, CA, 2003.
Wild Roof Journal, Issues 4, 9, 21.
Cathexis Northwest Press, 2019, 2020, 2022, 2023.
The Wardrobe, Sundress Publications, 2023, 2020.
Ran Away with the Star Bassoon, 2023.
The Night Heron Barks, 2021.
Global Poemic, 2020.
Lana Turner, Issue 12, 15.
Sunspot Literary Journal, Vol. 1, Issue 1; Vol. 2, Issue 1; Vol. 2, Issue 2.
Beyond Words Literary Magazine, Issues 6, 16, 17.
High Shelf Press, Issues XVII, XVI, XIV, XXII, XXIX.
Not Your Mother's Breast Milk, 2019.
“Ellsworth Kelly Ekphrasis,” Bat City Review, 2018.
Tulane Review, Winter 2018.
Arroyo Chico, Issues 17, 29.
Poetry at Found:RE, Copper Canyon Press, February 2023.
“Beyond Limerence: Valyntina Grenier’s Fever Dream / Take Heart” Laurie Saurborn, The Night Heron Barks, 2020.
Podcast # 9, Wild Roof Journal, 2021.
“Book Review: Fever Dream / Take Heart by Valyntina Grenier” Laine Cunningham, Writers Resource, 2020.
“C*nt Contest: Editors Prize” Laine Cunningham, Sunspot Journal Vol. 1, Is. 2
“Color My World” Marene Gustin, Out Smart Magazine, 2017.
“Ten Things to Do in Houston” Susie Tommaney, Houston Press, 2017.
“Inspired by Politics, Social Justice, and Elections” Lynn Trimble, Phoenix New Times, 2016.
“ARTELPHX 2015 The Clarendon Hotel” Melissa Fossum, Phoenix New Times, 2015.
“ARTELPHX Returns to The Clarendon Hotel” Lynn Trimble, Phoenix New Times, 2015.
“ARTELPHX at The Clarendon Hotel” Evie Carpenter, Phoenix New Times, 2014.
Valyntina has a multi-genre eco art practice and works in various spaces around the home she shares with her wife in Tucson, Arizona. Graduating with an MFA in poetry, she is mostly self-taught as a visual artist. She works with paint, ink, Neon, encaustic medium, recycled or repurposed materials, and words. Her work is feminist, atheist and fed up with the racial and gender inequality at work in our political systems—her art advocates. The series Cloud Show | Utopia celebrates LGBTQ+ pride; Don’t Shoot protests gun violence; Both And and Dress Our Souls are inspired by equality; Radio Ocean and Modern Plants are eco art.
Her work for Radio Ocean is a result of various ecological impulses. Encaustics and site-tailored installations upcycle materials that would usually end up in the garbage or recycling bin. Her hanging assemblage Man of War includes cleaned and manipulated packaging, shipping materials, and PPE used by her household in 2020. To further her desire to reduce and reuse, she only purchased materials for the hanging structure and paint (some glows in the dark). The paintings are a byproduct of each other. First layers were applied by pressing excess paint off of larger substrates on to smaller ones. Intentional work with brushes, paint markers and palate knives followed. Mixed media drawings for Modern Plants embrace zero waste. Valyntina allows ink to bleed through multiple pages of a Leuchtturm 1973 note book; finished works are two-sided.
The titles of her visual art are often recycled from her poetry. Valyntina is the author of Honeymoon Shoes (Cathexis Northwest Press Fall 2023) three poetry chapbooks, the tête-bêche, Fever Dream/ Take Heart (Cathexis Northwest Press 2020) and In Our Now (Finishing Line Press 2022). Several of her poems queer source texts. As part of her multi genre eco art practice Valyntina has reduced/ reused/ recycled vocabulary from primarily male authors to generate a first draft. As a second draft she will dictate the selected text to her phone. Rather than throwing out words that are misheard or lost in dictation she will upcycle the mistakes. She makes visual art with the “book drafts.”
Hear, see or read Valyntina’s work in Impermanent Earth, The Journal, Lana Turner and The Night Heron Barks. Find her at valyntinagrenier.com or Insta @valyntinagrenier.