Lovers Tree / 连理 Jia Lu 2004, oil on canvas, 36″ × 36″ / 91 × 91 cm. This is an older work (I can't believe it has been fourteen years ) but I posted it yesterday on jialu_classic, then realized I hadn't yet shared it with my fellow deviants. It feels much like the work I used to do as an art student at York University in Canada in the 1980s, when I painted women wrapped in cocoons of dry leaves. At that time I was recently arrived raw and unprotected from China, and my choice of subject reflected my insecurities. This oil painting however was done many years after I moved to the United States. It was painted for a Las Vegas stage show I was then writing and producing with AEG Live (yup, producers of Michael Jackson, Celine Dionne, Justin Timberlake and Coachella): two of the characters were a poet and a tree nymph or dryad, who fall in love but are impossibly separated by their natures, and by the jealousy of a demon king.... The show never got to rehearsals, but the painting lives on.