Very sad news has hit the comics community this week. Australian artist Conny Valentina lost her two cats, her entire art collection and all of her in-progress commissions to a devastating fire that also claimed her home. According to a local news report, Valentina’s personal art collection was worth at least $500 thousand. Aside from Valentina herself, who was not at home when the fire started, only a greyhound she just recently rescued survived.
In a public post on Facebook made on June 10, Valentina wrote, “My house has gone up in flames along with everything in it including Mina and Lucy and my whole life is pretty well at this point I apologize to anybody who had outstanding art here but it’s all gone everything is gone. I wish I was too.”
Since then, Valentina has posted several longer updates in response to the outpouring of support from friends and fans. On June 12, she wrote, in part, “This was my life. This was my love. Even if I felt lonely all I had to do was walk through my house and be reminded of my friends and peers who inspire me so much. From artists to sculptors you all gave me such joy and now it’s all melted all gone and all alien to me. I will treasure the memories for as long as I live and I shall mourn the death of my babies till the day I am able to join them.”
As of Monday, a GoFundMe set up for Conny Valentina has raised nearly $7,000 USD. There is also an art auction where artists and collectors can donate pieces, with all proceeds going to Valentina as she rebuilds. Those interested in updates can visit Valentina’s Facebook profile or her official page.