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tango, sensual and fine art photography

lavatop tango
The essence of tango in photos.

lavatop sensual
Sensuality in landscape and the human form.

fine art prints
Handmade gum bichromate art.

lavatop journal
Periodic snapshots of occasional, seasonal, or unexpected events.


My formal training is in fine arts and I graduated with a BFA from Eastern Kentucky University and MA from the University of California, Berkeley. After spending a few years in San Francisco, I headed to Iceland, where I've lived since 1988, making my living variously in graphic, web and interface design, as well as illustration and photography. At the same time, I've kept one foot in the art world, showing in both group and solo exhibitions.

The "Journal" section of this website is where I put batches of photos of various events to display to family, friends and other interested parties. The "Tango" and "Sensual" sections are galleries of selected photos. The photos in the Tango section are mostly from live performances, while the Sensual section includes studio and photoshopped creations. The "Fine Art Prints" section is a brief explanation of my gum bichromate printing, with a link to my fine arts website which shows examples of my hand made prints.

You might be wondering why I chose the name Lavatop. It's just a way of referring to Iceland (an island with volcanic activity), since much of my work is inspired by my surroundings. I wanted to come up with a catchy name, instead of just calling the web something like "Iceland Art Photo". I found out later that lavatop actually refers to a type of topsoil. Lately, my interests have moved away from an Icelandic theme...you'll see more dance photos (especially tango photos!) and artistic figure studies from now on.

If you are interested in a photo session, hiring me to shoot your event, or ordering a fine art print of your image, drop me an email or give me a call at +354 692 0134 [Ég tala íslensku]


©2000-2002 Laura Valentino prices and permissions about the artist email
go to lavatop journal jordan tagliavia - sicily birgitta jónsdóttir - iceland josy zareen - brazil