Valerie Haring – Oehm was born in El Dorado KS. She grew up in the country near the Walnut River where she had the luxury to explore nature and her dad’s old car collection. She earned her AA from Butler CC, her BSE in Art Education from Emporia State University, and her MA in Art Education from Wichita State University.
Throughout her educational journey, she studied with many of the preeminent college art professors in Kansas. She was the director of the Erman B. White gallery, Chair of the Butler CC Art Department, and currently serves as the Interim Dean of Fine Arts and Communication at BCC.
Valerie has an arts education rooted in naturalism and traditional materials. Over the span of her career, she has explored conceptual subject matter, and allowed the materials she works with to yield to the concept, all the while leaning on the formal elements and principles of design.
“Drawing from observation is like an exhilarating physical workout when one relies on muscle memory to carry one to the finish line. Working non-representationally, or conceptually, is like hiking into unknown territory; looking for something to latch onto and transform.” – Haring