Plein Air Meeker
Art Show & Auction: July 6 through 8
Art Show & Auction will be held at Meeker Public Library
Special to the Herald Times
MEEKER I Heads up Meeker residents—the Plein Air Meeker competition has returned. Until July 2 keep an eye open for artists painting throughout the White River Valley. The finished paintings will be available to view and purchase July 6-8 at the close of the event. Pre-event purchasing privileges are available to purchase patrons and donors only.
For those unfamiliar with the term “plein air,” a plein air painting is loosely defined as a “painting completed in the field.” The word plein air derives from the French term “en plein air” which translates “in the open air.” It has been actively practiced for the last 150 years and came to prominence with the Impressionist movement. Plein air’s popularity followed on the tails of the westward expansion in America. Many familiar names are associated with it—Thomas Moran, John Singer Sargent, Van Gogh and Monet to name a few.
Painting plein air in a natural setting is very different than working from a photograph or in the studio. An artist has a 1-½ to 2 hour period to finish a painting before the light changes. To complete a piece once in a while an artist will return at the same time and season another day or another year. Plein air painting forces one to make quick decisions about composition, color and finishing. These pieces tend to express the true feel of a place more accurately. Working en plein air provides the artist with a more complete knowledge of color, atmosphere and sometimes wildlife. The immediacy of painting amidst the heat, cold, gnats, wind or rain translates into the work. Occasionally interesting challenges arise. One of the first Meeker attendees purportedly glanced up from his work to find a mountain lion observing him. Finding oneself in the midst a herd of sheep or cattle being driven to pasture is not too unusual either.
Everyone is encouraged to participate in Plein Air Meeker 2018. Those of you who paint may sign up at the Chamber. If you are not so inclined, feel free to stop and observe the painters, or come view the end results and bid on a painting at the Meeker Library July 6-7, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and July 8, 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Also offered this year is a Plein Air workshop for children July 6. Please contact the Meeker Chamber for information.