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Loring Knoblauch, writing in Collecor Daily, locates Valenzuela's work in the traditon of the "self-arranged puzzles" of studio based photography while observing that "Valenzuela’s recent contributions to this genre build on many of these same themes and techniques while also introducing a more personal/political aspect to the proceedings ...his complex constructions are rooted in broader experiences drawn from his own life, including feelings of separation, alienation, and displacement."

"While many photographs constructed in the studio feel tight and intricate, there is something fuller about Valenzuela’s approach to scale. These aren’t jewel boxes or lab bench experiments, but room filling installations that wrangle with human-sized objects. That muscularity is intriguing, as it frees formalism from some of its typical constraints, and it opens the door to Valenzuela expanding the definitions of photographic installation."