| Leonardo/ISASTwith Arizona State University

Trudy Myrrh Reagan

founder: YLEM
Palo Alto,
United States

 Trudy Myrrh Reagan, known to the Art World as “Myrrh,” has been a professional artist in Palo Alto for more than 50 years. She is best known as founder of YLEM: Artists Using Science and Technology 1981-2008, which gave public forums at the Exploratorium for 14 of those years. Some of its members were computer developers of tools for artists, but its scope was much larger, including many unique media. Her scientific family inspired her to make science images and ideas the foundation of her art. She explored science in printmaking, batik, shibori, painting, and crumpled-paper mountainscapes. Using gear given by her electronics husband and son, she began making assemblages of retro electronics in 2000.


 In 1991, she began her “Essential Mysteries” series of translucent paintings on circlular sheets of 3/16” Plexiglas, which Ralph Abraham has called “stained glass for the modern age.” In it, Myrrh treats questions we all ponder, but never fully answer, in many sciences—from subatomic particles to dark matter. In her book, published in 2019, Essential Mysteries in Art and Science, she presents twelve peer-reviewed essays to accompany their reproductions. For two years, Myrrh researched the latest findings in every science discipline treated in this series, including chaos and complexity. As a Quaker, she skilfully blends her knowledge with spirit-led concerns. As well, her concern for humanity shows in another set of paintings and drawings. She is a product of this time and space, but seeks for that which is eternal.

Journal Articles:
Special Section: ArtScience: The Essential Connection

The Study of Patterns Is Profound

June 2007
Artist's Article

Can Personal Meaning Be Derived from Science?

February 2014
Historical Perspective

Ylem: Serving Artists Using Science and Technology, 1981–2009

February 2018