Roger Mertin (1942 - 2001)

Born in Bridgeport, Conn., Mertin became fascinated with taking pictures when he got a camera at age 13. He began formal study of photography in 1961 at Rochester Institute of Technology and graduated with a bachelor's degree in fine arts in 1965. He earned a master of fine arts degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo through the Visual Studies Workshop in Rochester in 1972.

Mertin, who was considered a master darkroom technician, gained notice for the emotional nature of his 35-mm photographs in the late 1960s and the 70s, but shifted to the larger 8-by-10-inch format for its clearer, photographic quality. His photos then took on a more reserved and understated character, some critics said. The change also coincided with new projects that had historical significance.

During his career, Mertin was awarded fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the New York State Council on the Arts, among others. Recent honors included his selection for a 1999 McKnight Artist Fellowship to Minnesota photographers. That award supported his work on the Carnegie library project. He also was recognized with a Minnesota State Arts Board Fellowship for Photography in 1998.

Untitled (couple in bed)
Untitled (couple in bed)

Untitled (couple in bed)


Vintage gelatin silver print

5.25 x 7.5 drymounted on
12 x 14.5 in. board

Signed and dated on board verso, with Mertin’s Rochester address