Ona Steele was born and raised in Asheville, North Carolina. Always facinated with beauty and movement, Ona studied ballet and was a champion equestrienne as a child. A teenage model, Ona turned down offers to move to Paris and New York so she could stay close to her family.
She studied political science and art history at Boston College, where she was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, graduated at the top of her class, and wrote a celebrated thesis on modernism and subjective truth. Despite her love of art, Ona accepted an offer from the University of Virginia School of Law, where she earned a law degree.
She then began a brief but colorful career as a trial lawyer in Texas, where she married her husband Scott, and then started a recruiting business. She brought her husband and recruiting firm to Delray Beach, Florida in the late 1990s.
A mother of three daughters, Ona returned to her love of the visual arts as the girls grew, first by mastering photography, which allowed her to capture the beauty and innocence of her girls. She began drawing and painting in the mid-2000s and soon began filling her home with her creations. Ona has shown her work locally in various businesses and salons and was asked to show her work in a month long solo exhibition at the ArtHouse of Delray in April 2013.
Ona now lives with her husband and three daughters in Ocean Ridge, Florida.
Ona’s work reveals a focus on feminine form and beauty. Perhaps entwined with visions and memories of her mother, an exotically beautiful Lithuanian-American singer, model and mother of four girls who passed away when Ona was still a teenager, Ona’s work often combines beauty and lush color with an undercurrent of disconsolateness or melancholy.