Born in 1938 in Castel Frentano (Chieti), Mario Ceroli studied at the Art Institute in Rome, with teachers such as Fazzini, Leoncillo and Colla, and devoted himself primarily to ceramics. Ceroli had a fortunate and happy debut, winning the Young Sculpture Award at the National Gallery of Modern Art in Rome in 1958. During these years he refined his art by working with ceramics at his teacher Leoncillo’s studio. Later Ceroli focused on wood in order to emphasise the primary element, the emerging meaning of real things, the symbolic value of the work, the artist’s founding gesture. He thus stripped the courtly and ‘noble’ material of its value in sculpture, investing the natural and poor material with a new and strong capacity for representation. Contrary to popular belief, however, he does not use wood from packing cases, but more simply raw wood. In parallel, he developed a curiosity for various natural materials such as soil, glass and ice.
In 1966, he established himself on the international scene at the Venice Biennale by winning the Gollin Prize for Cassa Sistina.
He has also produced important public works such as Il Cavallo (The Horse) of RAI in Saxa Rubra, La Casa di Nettuno (The House of Neptune) in Bologna, the Church and Theatre in Porto Rotondo, L’Uomo di Leonardo Da Vinci (The Man of Leonardo Da Vinci) at Fiumicino Airport, the Church of Tor Bella Monaca in Rome, the Church of Naples at the Centro Direzionale, L’Albero della Vita (The Tree of Life) in Sestriere, Turin. He lives and works actively in Rome.