Artist Profile    Merle Plagge

Merle O. Plagge, MD, ISEA
Phone (269) 330-9808
E-mail: mplagge247

I am an American Board of Surgery certified physician, retired from a busy surgical practice in Northern Michigan, that spanned over 30 years. While in practice I did wildlife and nature photography. Upon retiring, I went to a beginning watercolor class on a challenge, and loved it. Took several more workshops, and, the rest is history--I have never looked back since, and now my photography background serves me well for reference work and in design and compositioin. My art training has been primarily self taught, but I've studied under several internationally known artists.

I am a member of the International Society of Experimental Artists, and am a signature member. I am on the Board of Directors of ISEA and serve as Director of Membership Services.  I'm also a member of the Southwest Michigan Watercolor Society.

I have found that art gives me an expressive outlet for my feelings and thoughts and 1) keeps me active and learning, and 2) provides an outlet for expressed and unexpressed ideas and feelings, about God, our universe, and the world with all it's problems.

My paintings are done with loose planning and a lot of improvisation. Working mainly in watermedia, it gives me that loose and unplanned feeling that only watermedia can give. The media often dictates the course and outcome of the painting.

I believe we are all a product of, and reflect in our art, our inheritance and early learning, as well as the continued influence of our environment, media bombardment, and personal interactions with other people. So, coming from a long scientific background, my art tends to be strongly influenced and reflect scientific subjects.

In addition I have lived in rural areas most of my life, with the last 30 or so in Northern Michigan, which has greatly influenced the direction of my paintings. Also looking back on and considering the relatively short time I've been been painting, I've changed my style considerably. My visual problems in the last few years have also influenced subjects and style. But, I look forward to many more years of painting time, and they'll be most likely reflect a continued change in style.


Alone Painting
Alone - 5x7" - Acrylic on
Painting Iatrogenetic
Iatrogenetic - 15 x 12"
   Waterclor on  paper  
Kabuki - painting
Kabuki  -  25 x 19 - Acrylic on
Carnival - painting
Carnival  15x19" Mixed watermedia
on Watercolor Canvas
Night Dance Painting
Night Dance - 29x21" Acrylic
on paper
Zen Leaf - painting
Zen Leaf - 29x21" Mixed water-
media on paper
Splash - painting
Splash - 25 x 19" - Acrylic Ink
on Yupo
Snoopy & Friends painting
Snoopy and Friends -25 x 19"
Watercolor on paper

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Copyright, Open Door Gallery, Sturgis, Michigan 2009-2015
Webmaster: Merle O. Plagge, Please contact me for errors, "stuff" to include, etc. at