Kurt Merkel

Albuquerque, USA

Surrealist and Abstract Expressionist

My art seeks to inspire, to awaken something within you. I speak of the human experience, and express my whimsical nature. I strive to bring you a fresh and compelling interest to each subject, offering you a part of me, that you may find,
is a part of you… Enjoy!

Kurt Merkel – Described as both a Surrealist and Abstract Expressionist!

I create from intuition and self-expression. I call my calligraphic style, “The Language of Poetic Line”. This love of line has been evident ever since I can remember. I strongly identify with the beauty, the rhythms, the flow of energy expressed with this art form. Little did I know, that it would one day become my voice.

At what age did you know you wanted to be an artist?
I was 8 years old when I first documented my ambition to be an artist, which was written in a book at the end of my 3rd grade. So, I probably had those feelings earlier. I’ve always had an interest in art, creativity in general.
What is the earliest artwork you did that you can remember?
In 4th grade I wrote a fictitious story of adventure and illustrated parts of it in the margins. Unfortunately, I don’t have it. The story was a class favorite 🙂
Which classical or contemporary artists have inspired you?
Charles Demuth was the first artist that captured my attention. I bought a postcard of “Figure Five in Gold” during a visit to MOMA in my early teens. Kandinsky, Erte, Miro, Calder and Patrick Nagel all have been an influence. I share a sense of style, composition,color, movement and quality of line in my work.
How would you describe your artistic style?
My signature style is aluminum calligraphic compositions complemented with abstract expressionist painting.
When did you first sell an artwork? How did you feel?
My first freelance illustration job in the mid ’80’s. That’s when I truly realized I was a professional artist. As a fine artist, my first painting sold was  Heartstrings. The couple that bought it are prominent collectors and have the largest collection of my work. The thrill was reaching a new level of appreciation and stature from someone who loves you… as an artist, as a person. That’s beautiful, that’s what it’s all about.
What's your workstyle? Do you work on one piece at a time or work simultaneously on multiple pieces?
I paint one artwork at a time. Although, I’m always contemplating others and may have design concepts in the works.
How do you get the inspiration for a new piece?
I reach inside for a concept or theme and begin to express that with pencil sketches on tracing paper. For example… as a departure from my curved lines, I decided on a geometric series using circles. To give it meaning I titled the series, Intuition. The geometry of the circles symbolize our continuous intuitive thoughts and feelings as they float across our ethereal, subconscious landscape. My experimenting with the human form led to my “Lovers” series. A celebration of the human form and the relationships that fuel the “fire“ between us. I develop a story to give myself direction. My art combines my visual and intellectual creativity, often said is sensual, intellectual and entertaining.
Tell us a bit about your personal life ...
I also work as a creative director & graphic designer, I have a wonderful girlfriend of 9 years, I don’t play my guitar or play pool as much as I used to… which is an indication of how much time I spend in my visually creative world. I’m fascinated with our world & universe.
I have an open heart, compassion for all, a sensual and whimsical nature, enormously optimistic, and a champion for your dreams.

A few pieces from Kurt Merkel’s gallery



Why they love Kurt Merkel’s art

Nancy & David Naples, FL

“Both Nancy and I want to Thank You Very Much !!!! Your expertise and Creativity have now completed our Home. We love your work, and are currently sitting just staring at it!”

Jennifer & Ford Cocoa Beach, FL

“We’ve always loved you work, and the piece you created for our new home showcases the feeling of the beach and the art of the house. SPECTACULAR!!!!!!!!!!  Love it”

More about Kurt Merkel

Shows & Exhibitions



JUNE 10-11 / CHALLENGE NM / Santa Fe, NM


JULY 29-30 / CHEESMAN PARK / Denver, CO

AUG 5-6 / GIRL’S INC / Santa Fe, NM

AUG 19-20 / OAKBROOK / Oakbrook, IL

AUG 26-27 / PORT CLINTON / Highland Park, IL

OCT 6-8 / RIO GRANDE Balloon Fiesta / ABQ, NM

OCT 13-15 / RIO GRANDE Balloon Fiesta / ABQ, NM