- Santa Fe, NM -
The City of Santa Fe Arts Commission has chosen
by Alexander Merklein
an acrylic on canvas
as the Winner of the 2010 City of Santa Fe Poster Competition.
The 80 entries submitted for this year’s contest were judged on overall artistic quality and ability to portrait Santa Fe using the theme “timelessness.” The theme “timelessness” was chosen to honor the conclusion of Santa Fe’s 400th Commemoration and in celebration of looking forward. The poster will be used as a marketing tool to promote Santa Fe’s creativity and culture internationally.
Merklein studied art independently as a child, honing his drawing and painting from his home in Oxford, England.
Self-taught, Merklein continued to pursue his passion for painting, selling his first originals in 1983 at the Tatem Gallery in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. In 1985, he began working in the art department at Joy Silkscreen, a major textiles firm in Miami, FL. While in this industry, Merklein designed original images and also manually separated existing images for reproduction on fabric. In 1990, Merklein relocated to the West Indies, on the islands of the Lessor Antilles, and in 1991, had his first one-man-show at Spencer Cameron Gallery, located in Basseterre, St. Kitts. In 1992, Merklein had his second one-man-show at TMG Gallery in Charlestown, Nevis and continued with TMG for two more shows, one in 1993 and another in 1994. Upon his arrival to Santa Fe, Merklein’s works were shown primarily at Eldridge McCarthy Gallery in Sena Plaza, Santa Fe. In 2006, his works were shown at Grapes Gallery in Truth or Consequences, NM. In 2008, Merklein had the opportunity to study formal art instruction for the first time in his career, in both linear and color structure.
In his artist statement, Alexander Merklein uniquely describes himself and his work: “It has always seemed to me, that daily, everything in my path is potential art fodder. At a very early age I began looking at the world around me from a perspective which originates high above my head. I am inspired to record daily events, as well as historical features in the landscape around us. Particularly, I am fond of the things we tend to overlook as mundane or even unattractive. Such is the case with the scaffolding and work crew highlighted in my painting “Restoration,” which features the spiritually-elegant San Miguel Mission in downtown Santa Fe. In no short time, these everyday things we overlook will pass into the world of the archaic, just as did the age of steam.”
The poster competition is an annual event of the Arts Commission. Artists living in Santa Fe County are invited to submit original two-dimensional or three-dimensional works of art in any appropriate media.
The City of Santa Fe Arts Commission (SFAC), an agency within the municipal government of the City of Santa Fe, provides leadership by and for City government in supporting arts and cultural affairs. The SFAC also recommends programs and policies that develop, sustain and promote artistic excellence in the community. For more information contact the SFAC at 505.955-6707, email