Celebration of Art
Photo courtesy Celebration of Art

Congratulations to the winners of the following recent plein air events, and kudos to the organizers, volunteers, and patrons for making each a success!

Keep reading for recaps from:
• 11th Annual Celebration of Art
• 7th Annual Mendocino Open Paint Out

11th Annual Celebration of Art: 23 artists painted en plein air at the Grand Canyon in September, capturing views on the South and North Rims.

A Quick Draw — during which the artists had two hours to paint — took place, followed by an auction at Bright Angel Trailhead. Sponsors and collectors gathered at Kolb Studio for the first opportunity to purchase art. The exhibition opened to the public with a packed reception.

Both plein air and studio pieces make up the Celebration of Art Exhibition & Sale. Proceeds from the auction and exhibition support the goal of funding a future arts venue at the South Rim, as well as art programming at the park.

A combination juried and invitational event, Celebration of Art presented four awards to artists:

People’s Choice Award: Joshua Been
This award is for the favorite Quick Draw work and is voted on by attendees of the Quick Draw and Auction.

Artists’ Choice Award: Bill Cramer
This award is chosen by the participating artists for the artist who embodies the spirit of the event, combined with effort, skill, and creativity.

Best of Show, Plein Air: Robert Goldman
This award was presented by PleinAir magazine and was judged by Master Juror Jean Stern, the Director of the Irvine Museum Collection at the University of California, Irvine Institute and Museum for California Art. It was based on the body of plein air work completed during the first week of Celebration of Art (September 8–14).

Best of Show, Studio: Elizabeth Black
This award was presented by Fine Art Connoisseur magazine and was also judged by Master Juror Jean Stern. It was based on studio pieces the plein air artists submitted to the exhibition.

The week provided some challenging windy weather but included many opportunities to watch artists paint in the open air. The Exhibition & Sale will remain open to the public at Kolb Studio until January 20, 2020.

Next year’s event dates are:
Plein Air at Grand Canyon: September 12–18, 2020
Opening Weekend Events: September 18–20, 2020
Exhibition: September 20, 2020, to January 18, 2021
Learn more at www.grandcanyon.org/coa.

Plein air painting events
Mendocino Best in Show: Ryan Jensen, “Love Birds.” Photograph by Larry R. Wagner

7th Annual Mendocino Open Paint Out:

The Mendocino Art Center (MAC) hosted five prestigious featured artists and 60 participating artists, visiting from Alaska, Connecticut, and Idaho, as well as throughout California, as part of the seventh annual Mendocino Open Paint Out (MOPO), a plein air festival, September 16–22. The event presented the public with free opportunities to view artists paint en plein air, attend featured artist–hosted demonstrations, shop “wet paint” sales, with new water media, oil, and pastel paintings hung each day, and watch the Quick Draw Competition and cast a vote for the winning piece.

During the week, the artists painted 405 works of art, including 44 paintings created in a two-hour Quick Draw Competition at the Kelley House Museum. A MOPO celebratory reception was held to present 28 awards valued at more $9,000 in cash and prizes. The paintings were juried by featured artists Erin Dertner, Patricia Rose Ford, and Dennis Ziemienski.

Ryan Jensen from Blue Lake, CA, received the Southwest Art magazine Best in Show award for his oil, “Love Birds.”

Rick J. Delanty from San Clemente, CA, was awarded the PleinAir magazine Overall Consistency Award for his oil paintings, and the OutdoorPainter.com Featured Artist Award was presented to Dennis Simpson from Napa, CA, for his watercolor painting, “Pinky on Kasten.”

Awards in the oil category were presented to Wendy G. Franklin (first place, Rohnert Park, CA), John Crater (second place, McKinleyville, CA), Carol Tarzier (third place, Oakland, CA), and Michelle Murphy-Ferguson (honorable mention, Hydesville, CA).

Water media awards were given to Carolyn Lord (first place, Livermore, CA), Jamie Morgan (second place, Oakland, CA), Cleo Vilett (third place, Oakland, CA), and Margarita Anderson (honorable mention, Tracy, CA).

Pastel awards were bestowed on Jacquelyn Cisper (first place, Fort Bragg, CA), Janet Hardie (second place, Modesto, CA), and Mary Lou Correia (third place, Martinez, CA).

Themed awards were presented to Kristian Matthews (Vacaville, CA), Best Water Scene; Steven Taylor (Eureka, CA), Best Architecture; Tamara Keiper (Waterford, CA), Best Garden; Doug Woodman (Palo Alto, CA), Best Harbor Scene; Wendy Brayton (Petaluma, CA), Best Transportation; Rob Anglin (Livermore, CA), Best Non-Traditional; and Chella (Modesto, CA), Best Albion River Bridge Scene.

An Early Bird Award for the best painting hung by the morning of the third day of the event was awarded to Steven Taylor (Eureka, CA).

Featured Artist Judge’s Choice Awards were presented by Mendocino Open Paint Out co-founder John Hewitt to Ellen Howard (San Mateo, CA), by Erin Dertner to Mark Monsarrat (San Francisco, CA), by Patricia Rose Ford to John Bucklin (San Rafael, CA), and by Dennis Ziemienski to Sara Mordecai (San Jose, CA).

The People’s Choice Award was received by Steven Taylor (Eureka, CA), and the Quick Draw Viewer’s Choice Award went to Ryan Jensen (Blue Lake, CA). Both awards were voted on by the public.

The award-winning pieces may be viewed at MendocinoArtCenter.org/award-winners-2019.html.

The Mendocino Coast, located along a beautiful expanse of the Pacific Ocean in Northern California, is a spectacular setting for a plein air festival. Artists claim that the quality of light is unlike anywhere else in the world. From the rugged surrounding landscape, to the bay and beaches, to the quaint Victorian architecture and water towers of the town of Mendocino, to the nearby vineyards and wineries, the artists find abundant creative inspiration. The eighth annual Mendocino Open Paint Out is scheduled for September 14–20, 2020. For more information please visit MendocinoArtCenter.org.


Plein Air Painters of New Mexico 11th National Juried Members Show
Plein Air Painters of New Mexico, in partnership with the Santa Fe Collector Art Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico, will present its 11th National Juried members show on October 3, 2019. Featuring 150 juried works by New Mexico and other painters, and judged by the esteemed artist Peggi Kroll-Roberts, the exhibition will kick off with a reception and awards ceremony at the Santa Fe Collector on October 4, 2019. The show of PAPNM paintings will be available the month of October.

Upcoming travel and art events with Streamline Publishing:

Like this? Click here to subscribe to PleinAir Today,
from the publishers of PleinAir Magazine.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here