Adrian Arleo

Tree of Life

Lolo, MT
Clay, glaze, wax encaustic

"The idea behind the Tree of Life involves the merging of icons: The Tree of Life, which is a universal image and concept, now personified to look a bit like an aged Virgin Mary. I was pondering what the Tree of Life would look like today if it were “humanized.” The face has a far-away expression of longing. While the tree branches are harshly pruned, the ends have little bits of gold to suggest a stirring of life, and the potential for new growth. The face in this work is lined to represent the growth rings of a tree, showing strength and longevity." Adrian Arleo has been making things since childhood. Encouraged by her mother and informed by several generations of creative women, she found clay at age thirteen. Majoring in art, ceramics and anthropology, her study of art through various cultures gave her insights into human and universal themes. She began focusing on the human form in graduate school. Arleo creates a fusion of the human figure, combining texture and imagery from the natural world. The remote spaces, animals and flora of Montana, along with other cultural and universal themes, inform her work. Her work has been widely published, is represented by numerous galleries, and is in many public and private collections.