Mernet Larsen (American, b. 1940), Getting Measured, 1999, Acrylic,
tracing paper and string on canvas. Museum purchase with funds provided
by Mr. and Mrs. Jay Crouse, 2000 SN11041.1.
Collection of The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art,
the State Art Museum of Florida, Florida State University
Getting Measured, 1957-2017
On view October 11, 2017 through February 11, 2018
The Tampa Museum of Art will present a survey of paintings and works on paper by artist Mernet Larsen (American, b. 1940). Her work alludes to a range of art historical references, from 12th-century Japanese scrolls, 15th-century Italian painting, to the geometric abstractions of Russian artist El Lissitzky (1890-1941). Her early abstract compositions, such as Duccio’s Saint (1988) in the Tampa Museum of Art’s collection, reflect her ongoing formal explorations of experiential time, space, and color. Later figurative paintings, including the recent work Raft (2017), depict ordinary moments and activities—from reading in bed, attending casual dinners, to participating in faculty meetings. The exhibition Mernet Larsen: Getting Measured will feature never-before-seen early drawings, a select group of studies and works on paper, and a survey of paintings from the 1960s to the present. Larsen’s art resides in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, Walker Art Center, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg. The artist divides her time between Tampa and New York City.