The Heroine’s Journey of Laurence de Valmy

What is the best thing that I love about my work?  

Beyond having a flexible schedule, it’s great to be able to work without feeling like it’s work! My current POST series enables me to combine my passion for painting and for art history. Apparently I’m not alone to like these art stories and I’m lucky to have enthusiast collectors.

What is my idea of perfect happiness?  

I believe happiness it the sum of happy moments. So I try to savor them and be conscious about them.  We tend to focus so much on what’s not right that it blurs our perception. The best happy moments are to spend quality time with the people I love.

What is my greatest fear?  

I’m a fairly optimistic person so I usually do not think too much about all the bad things that can happen… but of course, as a mother, my biggest fears would be that something happens to my children.

What is the trait that I most deplore in myself?

We all have the defaults of our qualities I guess… I tend to trust people, thinking the best of them and believe what they say. I have been disappointed a few times and learnt some lessons but I probably would not be a great spy!

Which living persons in my profession do I most admire?

I have a great admiration for David Hockney who beyond being a great artist, has an extensive knowledge of art history that he likes to share through his books or lectures. I love his sunny personality and curious mind. He has managed to have artistic, commercial and public recognition and that is well deserved.

What is my greatest extravagance?

I’m not sure it’s an extravagance, but I’m a fan of Jane Austen. Beyond her books, I’ve seen all the movies and read a ton of sequels and spin offs!

On what occasion would I lie?  

To protect someone.

What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work?

I used to work in a company with a great team, in an open space. I loved the interactions. That’s probably the one thing I miss from my previous career. That’s why I love to connect with other creative and friends either online or even better in real life!

When and where was I the happiest, in my work?

I am the happiest when I see people smile when they take a first look at my work and then when they stay a bit longer and realize that all the stories and comments are fact based. I also love to collaborate on commissions with passionate collectors, I always learn through the process.

If I could, what would I change about myself?

I wish I naturally loved sports!

What is my greatest achievement in work?  

So far, it was to exhibit my work next to Andy Warhol’s painting at the Museum of Urban and Contemporary Art of Munich at the invitation of Hubert Burda Media and that my work belongs to private collections along artists that I admire.

Where would I most like to live?

I’d like to live in southern California. I love its mix of culture, diversity and climate. The south of France is probably where I’d like to live in the long run…

What is my most treasured possession?

I’m not too attached to material things but I would be my engagement ring.

What is my most marked characteristic?

Probably that I’m an optimist.

What is my most inspirational location, in my city?  

The city I live in is located near Philadelphia but my home city is Paris. And I would say that the most inspirational location would be its museums, my favorite being the Musee d’Orsay.

What is my favourite place to eat and drink, in my city?

My best memories are picnics with friends in front of the Eiffel Tower or on the banks of the Seine behind Notre Dame. Difficult to beat!

What books influenced my life and how?

I’ve been raised in a home full of books: classics, novels, art books, biographies, photography… and since I love to read, I just had to dig in. It’s the sum of all these books that have shaped my interests and influenced my path.

Who are my favorite writers?

I already mentioned Jane Austen. I would add Emile Zola and Maupassant.

You Only Die Once. What music would I listen on my last day?

Probably some crooners like Michael Bubble or Harry Connick Junior !

Who is my hero or heroine in fiction?

I am a romantic a heart so I would say Jane Eyre, Denise Baudu in Le Bonheur des Dames by Emile Zola who both have inner strength and of course Mr Darcy (from Pride and Prejudice)!

Who are my heroes and heroines in real life?

Resilient people, who remain positive even through difficulties, people who dedicate their life to help others and improve things.

Which movie would I recommend to see once in a lifetime?

I’m not sure to be able to name just one, but I love movies from French Director Claude Lelouch. His movies are about love, human weaknesses, destiny and also reincarnation. I often think life is like one of his movies but it’s probably the other way round!

What role plays art in my life and work?

Well, art is at the core of it! My work is about revisiting art history through the personal stories of artists. What made them create their work, what were the connections between artists through time. My goal is to invite people to see the works with a new eye.

Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime?

My greatest fans are my family and I’m very grateful for the support of my husband.

Whom would I like to work with in 2019?  

I’m very lucky and grateful to work with some dynamic and supportive art dealers, I am happy to have many projects with them in 2019.

Which people in my profession would I love to meet in 2019?

David Hockney! One can dream right?

What project, in 2019, am I looking forward to work on?  

I am working on a series of duos, highlighting the relationship between famous women & men artists (Cassatt / Degas or Krasner/Pollock for example). Until recently the women were often presented as secondary and that vision is changing now. I’d like to contribute to that movement.

Where can you see me or my work?

My work is available on https://www.laurencedevalmy.com/, Facebook and Instagram where I share about all my exhibitions, since it’s always nicer to see art for real…

What do the words “Passion Never Retires” mean to me?

That it stays with you and grow over time. I did not make art for a while when my children were born but it was still there and it was just a pause. I am lucky to be able to work thanks to my passion.

Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story?

Maya Rowencak Crauderueff, the founder of Maya’s Hope a small size charity supporting children in need. She created her charity from scratch and she’s an amazing person.

How can you contact me?

By email at ldevalmy@gmail.com or through social media.

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