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BRYAN VALENZUELA, winner of the Leff-Davis Fund for Visual Artists grant, stands with two of his works of art. Courtesy photo


Talented Oak Ridge grad awarded visual arts grant

By From page B13 | January 31, 2014

Oak Ridge High School graduate Bryan Valenzuela was awarded $5,000 in recognition of his exceptional talent and demonstrated ability by The Leff-Davis Fund for Visual Artists.

“Being a professional artist isn’t necessarily a traditional route with clear sign posts. There’s a lot of feeling your way in the dark, piecing together a living from various sources while making and selling your work,” said Valenzuela. “This grant from Sacramento Region Community Foundation is a beacon for emerging artists like myself. I plan on using the money solely to keep creating art and gathering some ‘dream’ tools along the way.”

Valenzuela lived in El Dorado Hills and graduated from Oak Ridge High School before moving to Sacramento and earning a bachelor of arts in art studio from California State University, Sacramento.

For more than a decade, the overlying focus of his work has been perfecting a particular technique of drawing using handwritten text with pen and ink with the use of varying large and often minuscule text to carve out shape and shading within the drawing. He plans to use the funds to offset studio and promotion costs.

“The foundation was very pleased to be able to offer this fund to the visual artists community and see this inaugural launch as a groundbreaking opportunity to benefit the rich and diverse field of visual artists in the Sacramento region,” said chief giving officer Priscilla Enriquez.

The Leff-Davis Fund for Visual Artists was created to support serious aspiring professional artists in the advancement of their careers through a monetary award for the creation of original art.

In the fund’s inaugural year, awards of $5,000 each were given to local artists Bryan Valenzuela and David Lane based on panel recommendations.

Retired pathologist and avid art collector Dr. Emily Leff established the fund at the Sacramento Region Community Foundation to support local visual artists on an individual level — especially emerging artists who have demonstrated professional commitment to their work. Leff chose to work with the foundation because of its reputation for professional grants management.

For more information contact Shirlee Tully at [email protected] or 916-765-9000.

The Sacramento Region Community Foundation is an advocate for quality of life, dedicated to connecting people who care with charitable causes. An effective steward of the region’s charitable assets since 1983, the foundation’s mission is to serve as a leader and trusted partner in expanding philanthropy and enhancing its impact in our community.

From charitable funds established by individuals, families, businesses and organizations, the Sacramento Region Community Foundation awards grants and engages in leadership activities to address a wide variety of current and long-term community issues.

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