Valerie Stuart is best known for her abstract color field paintings. Influenced by mid century color field painters such as Mark Rothko, Stuart arrives at her unique abstract compositions by adding levels of gradation, resulting in each painting becoming a colorful expressions of feeling. With a strong emphasis on the emotional qualities of color, Stuart encourages viewers to “temporarily leave their present state of mind and enter a world of abstraction, where color serves as the emotional catalyst and method of communication”. Inspired by the fresco artists of early Renaissance painters, Stuart combines plaster and marble dust to create depth and texture with overlays of varnish and oil glazes. These glaze applications create an atmospheric luminosity. Additional scratches and marks on the surface of the canvas create an element of tension between the universal language of color and the individual language of expression.