Merv was born in 1934 in the Bronx, New York. The son of Soviet immigrants that left Minsk (today the capital of Belarus) around World War I, Merv grew up in a Jewish-Italian neighborhood in the Bronx, as the country was just emerging from the Great Depression. He met Loretta in 1963 after moving to Manhattan. They married in 1964, and lived together for many years in a great apartment on 81st Street West, across from the Hayden Planetarium. They traveled frequently, long before the Euro and back when you could do Europe on $5 a day. Merv and Loretta eventually moved to New England, first to Springfield and then to Brookline, Mass, outside of Boston.
Merv is classically trained in art. He attended Music and Art High School in New York City where he learned all media of art and worked extensively with oils, charcoal, and water color. His primary influences as a young aspiring artist were born from visiting as many museums as possible, and he took a particular liking to the impressionists. Merv spent most of his professional career in advertising, designing ad campaigns for print media, brochures, and even some TV, for large advertising firms as well as in private practice after starting his own advertising agency. After all these years, Merv finally has returned to his initial roots and true love – painting and original creative art.
Today, Merv is done shoveling, and makes his home in sunny south Florida, outside of Fort Lauderdale. He and Loretta have been married for 50 years (a remarkable tribute to Loretta, if you have ever spent time with Merv) and have one son, Michael, daughter-in-law, Randi, and grandson, Dylan, who live outside Washington, DC. (Incidentally, Michael serves as proof that the artistic gene apparently is not always inherited and may skip a generation.) Merv spends much of his retirement watching and debating news and politics, running (an avid runner since in his 30s, he estimates he has more mileage on him than does his car), and occasionally working on that new piece of artwork, typically commissioned by Michael who has a wall that needs a finishing touch.