Audacity - Nancy XiáoRong Valentine

Opening Reception: Sunday / December 3, 2023 / 1:00-4:00pm
Exhibit Dates: December 3, 2023 - January 14, 2024

Nancy XiáoRong Valentine (she/her) is a Chinese American artist living and making a life in rural Otter Tail County, Minnesota.

Conceived as the second child of a family residing in Lanzhou, Gansu during the era of China’s ‘One Child Policy,’ Nancy’s mother immigrated to Minnesota, USA in 1992 to gift her daughter the opportunity of life. 

Though often referred to as “the creative kid” throughout her lifetime, it wasn’t until 2016 that she officially launched her creative career. With natural artistic inclination, self-determination and children’s craft-quality watercolor supplies as the only tools in her bag, Valentine signed a lease with the Kaddatz Artist Lofts where she self-taught and began to pursue painting. In the spring of 2017, Valentine was awarded a Career Development Grant from the Lakes Region Arts Council (LRAC) which allowed her the means to acquire professional grade materials and the freedom to create with conviction.

Valentine views her artistry as a channel to deepen her cultural connections to and between her Chinese heritage and Midwestern roots. Her creative process begins and ends with intention, resulting in conceptually complex visual stories woven with nuance and symbolism. Her expressive stylized brushwork is inspired by Chinese calligraphy and, when paired with Valentine’s performative prose, is meant to evoke empathy.

Valentine believes that artistry and advocacy work in tandem and lives out this value by being present and active in the Otter Tail County, MN creative community. In 2020, Valentine was named a Blandin Community Leadership Institute Cohort Member, an LRAC 2021 Cohort Artist and Career Development Grant recipient, and a 2021 Springboard for the Arts Artists Respond: Equitable Rural Futures Artist. She was awarded a Creative Support for Individuals grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board (MSAB) for FY 2022 and 2023, an FY 2023 Legacy Individual Arts grant from LRAC, named a 2022-2024 Springboard for the Arts Rural Regenerator Fellow, and, most recently, awarded a FY 2024 Creative Individuals grant from MSAB.


Artwork by Nancy X. Valentine in a gallery.
Artwork by Nancy X. Valentine in a gallery.

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

Legacy logo.