Virginia was born in Mt. Morris, a small mill town deep in the Genesee Valley in Upstate New York. Raised among Italian immigrants, she was shaped by traditional ethnic and religious values. Although Virginia loved art, she was only permitted a career in teaching or nursing, so she became a nurse and raised a family.
At age 56 she left her career as a health care professional to attend art school and earned a B.F.A from the Maine College of Art. After exploring art in Italy on a fellowship, she attended the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) where she earned an M.F.A. Today, Virginia is a full time artist and a part time art teacher in Rochester, NY.