Nearly 30 artists are represented by more than 60 paintings in “The Plein Air Painters of Kentucky Exhibit Olmsted Parks Paintings,” on view now at Jane Morgan Studio and Gallery in Louisville, Kentucky. 

“Seneca Park Path,” by Katie Burke, 2014, pastel, 11 x 14 in.

Frederick Law Olmsted designed many public parks across the United States and influenced other landscape architects with his penchant for relaxing, pastoral scenes, secluded spots, and picturesque use of rocks, bridges, and stone steps. Louisville is one of the few cities that fully implemented a citywide plan by Olmsted, and the necklace of Olmsted’s green jewels around the city is much beloved. 

Big Rock, a landmark in Olmsted’s Cherokee Park. Photo: Mike Bucayu

“It’s Warmer Than It Looks,” by Susan Sizemore, 2014, oil on canvas panel, 6 x 8 in.

Jane Morgan, the founder of the Plein Air Painters of Kentucky, hosted the first show of this kind in 2010. She reports that around 50 of the pieces in that show sold. “People love the parks and they love these paintings,” says Morgan. “This year we painted in all seasons, and they are all represented in this exhibition.” 

“Old Glory at Shawnee,” by Catherine Bryant, 2014, oil on canvas panel, 11 x 14 in.

Olmsted’s parks were designed to blend human activity with pastoral scenes. Photo: Mike Bucayu

The artists and the gallery are each donating 10 percent of their share of the sales to the Olmstead Parks Conservancy, a local group that restores and protects the 18 Olmsted parks in the Louisville area. The show will be on view through May 31.


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