"In drawing our attention to the nonthreatening features of the Klansmen and women beneath their hoods, Valdez strips them of their ability to terrorize. At the same time, our inability to pinpoint their identities blurs the line that separates the devils from the men, us from them. 

-Andrea Lepage Associate Professor of Art History Washington & Lee University


"His most recent body of work, The Strangest Fruit, places realistic depictions of people known by the artist within an historical subject—the lynching of Latinos in Texas and the United States more broadly—metaphorically illustrating the persecution and oppression felt by contemporary Latinos in the United States. The series of large-scale, oil on canvas works the supposed throes and aftermath of a death by hanging. Slightly larger than life-size, the figures float, decontextualized, on a white background. The ropes that bind them are no longer visible, and the composition becomes an ambiguous scene between hanging and ascension."

Ian Alden Russell, Curator of Bell Gallery, Brown University

This suite of paintings pays homage to my lifelong friend, 2nd Lt. John R. Holt Jr., (1978 - 2009) who survived a tour of duty in Iraq as a combat medic, but lost a battle with post-traumatic stress disorder in 2009.