Susan LeRoy Merrill

Photo of Susan LeRoy Merrill. Courtesy: Daisy Rockwell.

Susan LeRoy Merrill
June 4, 1942 – October 24, 2017

I share with you the passing of Susan LeRoy Merrill, artist, author, vibrant spirit, and mother of trustee Daisy Rockwell. Susan is also survived and cherished by beloved husband Carl Sprague, son Ruslan and daughter Elena, son-in-law, Aaron, granddaughter Serafina, and Rockwell family members. Susan taught us so very much about living, with joy and panache, about dying with dignity and gratitude for a life fully lived, and about letting go with grace. She created her last days this summer as she wished to live, painting, surrounded by friends, family and her beloved Corgis. Her art brought much joy and taught us to look at the natural world around us, the world of animals, and even bugs! Her children’s book, I Live in Stockbridge, still available through the Museum, is a personal walk through a town she loved and where she raised her family. There are many chapters to share about Susan’s life, but none is more beautiful than the eulogy her daughter Daisy wrote below. Our hearts go out to Daisy, Carl, all of Susan’s family and many friends.

~ Laurie Norton Moffatt, Director/CEO, Norman Rockwell Museum

 

Susan Merrill,

Susan Merrill, “The Swing.” 38.5″ x 27.5″. Acrylic on canvas. ©Susan Merrill.

“When my mother called me in early June and told me she’d been diagnosed with a glioblastoma and only had three months to live, she immediately launched into a description of her plans for her remaining days: most notably, she must complete a series of 12 small paintings of bugs beneficial to gardeners before she died. The tumor had started in the communication section of her brain, but did not affect her ability to paint until the end, and she was able to complete her paintings in record time. As her usual exceptional communication abilities began to deteriorate over the summer, she taught us many precious lessons about embracing life and accepting death. It was a summer of charades, drawings, diagrams and laughter over the amazing-sounding unrecognizable words and sounds that came out of her mouth. Only at the end, when she could no longer write or draw, and nearly all her words were unrecognizable, did she show signs of frustration and sadness. The end came mercifully swiftly, and she died last night in her favorite room of her favorite house, surrounded by beloved humans and corgis in a shower of Bach by a roaring fire. We will all carry with us her color, her humor, her word play and her way of re-inventing the world through the power of creative imagination.

Some of her paintings and prints of her bug series are available at her Etsy shop: www.etsy.com/shop/SusanMerrillPainting. Funds raised will help defray medical and other costs accumulated by her household during this difficult period.” ~ Daisy Rockwell

Hanna-Barbera: The Architects of Saturday Morning

By | April 1st, 2017|Categories: Past Exhibition, Past Exhibitions|Tags: , , , , |

Hanna-Barbera: The Architects of Saturday Morning is the first museum exhibition on the world’s most successful animation partnership.

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Enduring Ideals: Rockwell, Roosevelt, and the Four Freedoms

By | February 1st, 2017|Categories: Blog, Press Release - Current, Upcoming Exhibitions|

Enduring Ideals: Rockwell, Roosevelt & the Four Freedoms is the first comprehensive traveling exhibition devoted to Norman Rockwell’s iconic depictions of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms: Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Worship, Freedom from Want, and Freedom from Fear.

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Hanna-Barbera: Toon-ament of Champions!

By | November 7th, 2016|Categories: Blog|

A Champion has been crowned!
Congratulations to Scooby-Doo! After a 31-day competition, Scooby was the clear winner against 31 of his peers! Make sure to visit our exhibition HANNA-BARBERA: The Architects of Saturday Morning to see Scooby and the entire cast of characters!

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April Fools 2018

By | March 26th, 2018|Categories: Uncategorized|

Spot the 43 Mistakes in this 1943 Rockwell April Fools painting... The principal April fooleries in the painting are: 1. the trout, the fishhook and the [...]

Illustrator Lisa Cyr to Present Journaling Workshop for Artists and Writers at Norman Rockwell Museum

By | March 22nd, 2018|Categories: Blog, Press Release - Current|Tags: , , , , , , |

Norman Rockwell Museum will present the workshop Just Imagine: Creative Storytelling in Journals and Sketchbooks at Norman Rockwell on Saturday, April 28, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Lead by award-winning illustrator Lisa Cyr, this hands-on workshop will focus on the development of personal content through journaling and sketching in handmade and custom-altered books.

Illustrator Katie Atkinson To Present Art, Mindfulness, and Self-Reflection Workshops at Norman Rockwell Museum

By | March 21st, 2018|Categories: Blog, Press Release - Current|Tags: , , , , , , , |

Norman Rockwell Museum will present a series of art and wellness workshops to be held on Saturdays, May 5 and June 30, from 5 to 7 p.m. Katie Atkinson, an illustrator who focuses on themes of wellness, personal growth, and transformation, will guide participants in an exploration of art as a means for achieving a state of flow, mindfulness, and self-reflection.

Illustrator Peter de Sève to Give Talk on Fantasy Art Inspiration at Norman Rockwell Museum

By | March 20th, 2018|Categories: Blog, Press Release - Current|Tags: , , , , , , |

As part of its Picturing The Fantastical series, Norman Rockwell Museum will present an evening lecture with illustrator Peter de Sève on Saturday, May 12, from 5 to 7 p.m. An artist celebrated for his work for The New Yorker, picture books, and character designs for such animated films as Finding Nemo, Robots, and the Ice Age series, Peter de Sève has been inspired by masters of fantasy illustration throughout his career.

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