Born in Russia in 1984, Valeria Rzianina moved to Toronto with her mom in 1991. In 2007, she earned her Bachelor of Fine Art from Ontario College of Art and Design. Like a true Aquarius, Valeria is full of creativity and loves everything art. She has been painting for 15 years, and professionally since 2002. Her day-to-day gig is doing makeup and hair for some of the hottest glamour and fitness models in the industry. She embodies every aspect of being an artist, exclaiming, “When I’m not painting faces, I paint canvases!”
And what a canvas she paints. Rzianina is inspired with and fascinated by pornography. “It is such a cultural obsession, yet it remains hush-hush and underground. That tension is fascinating”. Her method is unique. She takes pornographic images from magazines, cuts them out, collages them as massive orgies on big canvases, and then paints over them. Her style is painterly, textured, and colorful and her process of choosing which images to use is similar to that of a normal porn consumer: “I keep what I like and delete what I don’t and that’s the process.”
Rzianina currently lives in downtown Toronto and paints every day. She says that the art scene in Toronto is fantastic. The city is really made up of many little (and big) neighborhoods; they’re all slightly different and each offer something unique. Toronto has hundreds of galleries and alternative art space (shops, restaurants, lounges and cafes) where emerging and established artists can show their work. Toronto is also a big part of the international art scene – hosting events such as the Affordable Art Fair, Toronto International Art Fair, The Outdoor Art Exhibition and Nuit Blanche. Toronto is like a New York’s hip little cousin – there literally is something for everyone.
To see more of Valeria’s work and to learn more about her, check out her websites: