About Studio Retreat

About the Studio

At studio retreat, students are provided the space, materials and inspiration to create original, unique, and beautiful art in a relaxing and fun atmosphere.  Studio Retreat also offers professional art therapy to help people who have experienced illness, trauma or challenges in living.  Mary Ablao” private art therapy practice includes treatment for clients with closed-head injuries, PTSS, depression and dementia.

Through the process of creating art, the client finds the self-awareness and skills to cope with symptoms, ease the impact of traumatic experiences, and improve cognitive abilities.


Mary moved her studio to historic downtown Saint Johns to share her passion for the beauty and healing powers of art to her clients and students, young and old alike. She believes thoroughly in the power of art to soothe, heal and fulfill.


About Mary

 Mary is a long time Michigan resident. She moved to Laingsburg after graduating from MSU in 1985 with a BFA. She studied art history in London and thereafter obtained her Masters degree in Professional Studies/Art Therapy from the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York.  Mary has been a registered art therapist since 1985.  Studio Retreat began as Studio on the Lake in 1895. Mary drew her artistic inspiration from the view outside her home studio window of beautiful and serene Round Lake in mid-Michigan. Mary moved her studio to historic downtown St. Johns to share her passion for the beauty and healing powers of art to her clients and students, young and old alike. She believes thoroughly in the power of art to soothe, heal and fulfill.

Mary’s work has been shown at the Petoskey Art Show, the Alpena Art Show, Design 309, the Lansing Art Gallery and shows in Mt. Clemens and Saugatuck. 

Explore the World of Art

Studio Retreat guides you on a creative adventure where you can be brave in a loving environment.

Take your next journey with us:

Get Started