Seattle artist Betty Merken’s latest series of monotypes continue to explore the way color and form interact to create image. They are exuberant and widely ranging, both in her use of shape and color. The direction for this body of work evolved from experimentation with cut paper shapes in her studio. She explains, "in this new body of work I’m examining how a geometric form takes on a totally different life, when just a corner, or a section for instance, of the rectangle is curved. This simple shift can create a new, equivocal shape which now hovers between recognition and abstraction." Combining newly emerging shapes with colors ranging from primary red, blue, and yellow, to hot pink, and turquoise, the energy of these prints invigorate the eye and the mind.
Betty Merken earned a BA in Arts Education from the University of Washington. She also studied art at the University of California at Los Angeles and completed a residency at Crown Point Press in San Francisco. She has taught extensively in Los Angeles and Seattle and exhibited her work since 1992. Her work is found in many public collections including the Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts; the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco; The Vivian and Gordon Gilkey Center for Graphic Arts, Portland Art Museum, OR; Grunwald Center for Graphic Arts, UCLA; and Armand Hammer Museum, Los Angeles.