Memorial to painter Eleanor Merritt

  2-4-22– Memorial to painter Eleanor Merritt. Eleanor began to draw when she was five years old and “never stopped making Art.” She was supported in her passion by her mother, an immigrant with a 6th grade education, who once challenged an elementary teacher who complained that Eleanor was “always drawing.” I interviewed Eleanor when she was over seventy and still going strong. She said she’d “learned to compartmentalize” so she could do all of the things she wanted and needed to do with her life. She gave all the attention needed to her work as a teacher, the love and care of her husband and children, and never stop doing Art – even when she had to do it “in the bathroom after midnight.” Eleanor never stopped exploring her own very personal relationship to painting and courageously believed in her own artistic vision. When she moved to Sarasota, her work was very different from the popular “palm trees and sunsets,” and when shown would be “hung by the bathroom door, or in a corner.” She never gave up creating her own work and was rewarded when her work was recognized.  Eleanor Merritt is a role model for ‘self-actualization’ and listening to her story tells us all how it can be done. Listen to this passionate woman describe her very special life and come see her extraordinary work in a Remembrance to Eleanor Merritt at the Ringling Museum Feb 18, 2022 – Aug 21, 2022 at Art Gallery 12

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