About the Artist

Marla Slott was born in 1955 and grew up mostly in Orlando Florida where she lived on a lake and was close to nature. She swam in the lake, made little towns in the sand on the beach for the frogs and watched the endlessly changing pattern of the waves in the water and the clouds in the sky.

 

She began her formal study of art at the University of Pennsylvania withRobert Godfrey and Neil Welliver, a well known American figurative painter. Welliver, a lover of landscape himself, sent her out to paint landscapes which subject matter was a great inspiration to her. She then went on to study in the MFA program at Indiana University with Robert Barnes, Bonnie Sklarsky  and Barry Gealt among others.

 

Her desire to live in a Jewish country, as well as her love for Mediterranean cultures, and her need for beauty in the landscape around her, took her to Israel. For 25 years she has lived and worked on Kibbutz Ketura, located in the southern Arava desert.

 

She has shown in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Beer Sheba, Ashkelon, Eilat and the local gallery in the Arava.

 

About the Paintings

Marla loves painting from nature. Her paintings are a dialogue with the visual wonder of the trees, rocks and clouds. In her watercolor landscapes, via the transparency of the color and the unpredictable nature of the medium,  she expresses the ephemeral quality of nature that is ever changing and evolving. In her oil landscapes she is able to find a more solid and sensual connection to her surroundings.

 

About the Scultpure

In her sculpture, Marla explores issues that her landscape paintings don't express. The kinds of themes which run through these works are reflective of her sorrow over war and the destruction of the environment. She uses materials found locally in the desert, such as barbed wire and rusty remains from the army’s target practice and from tar barrels used in the 50’s to create the road to Eilat and combines them with ceramic creations to tell her stories. “Cradle”, “Barbed Nest”, “Tulip” and “Punctured Planter” are all works reflective of the very threatening environment we have made for ourselves and our children, through the destruction of the environment and through war. The rusted metal  represents that threat and the ceramic pieces represent a kind of hope for life in spite of the mess we have made for ourselves and for future generations. “The Shield that Doesn’t Shield” is a statement of sorrow over the loss of life in war. From an aesthetic point of view, the solidity and the permanency of the ceramic material provides an intriguingly sharp contrast to the found metal objects that are rusted and worn and shot through with bullet holes.

While the colors and shapes in her landscapes grow from the beauty of the place, the ideas behind the sculpture grow from the subject matter, history and even the materials from the Arava Desert.  It is artwork that is very much about the place from which it grows.