Merlin was born in Christchurch, New Zealand in 1959 and moved to the UK in her early twenties. She studied Fine Art at London Guildhall between 1993 and 1996.
The haunting three-quarter portraits on a simple black background or filled with forest foliage and strange beasts resemble folkloric medieval art. Her colour palette is quite dark and even in the paintings where bright colours are incorporated, such as an azure blue or intense yellow, they have quite an ominous quality yet Merlin doesn’t find them pessimistic at all. Very cinematic in nature, they each have their own narrative and are compelling, beautiful and uneasy in equal measure.