Show Preview | Plein Air Rockies

Estes Park, CO
Cultural Arts Council Fine Art Gallery, August 23-October 26

Kelly Kotary, Forest Patterns, oil, 18 x 24.

Kelly Kotary, Forest Patterns, oil, 18 x 24.

This story was featured in the September 2014 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art September 2014 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story!

Estes Park, CO, and beauty go hand in hand. Surrounded by some of the country’s most striking scenery, the mountain town is a place where artists come to experience beauty and render it on canvas. The town has a history of presenting annual plein-air festivals through its Cultural Arts Council, and for the last 13 years the latest incarnation—Plein Air Rockies—has kept that tradition alive. For two weeks in August, 34 artists from around the country spend time painting the landscape and other local scenes. The fruits of their labors are on view at an exhibition
and sale that runs from August 23 to October 26 at the Cultural Arts Council Fine Art Gallery. On opening day, a Quick Draw and live auction take place in the morning, and an artists’ reception and awards presentation take place in the evening.

Collectors can expect to see a variety of subjects. “In addition to the opportunities for landscape subject matter, Estes Park is rich in history, from the Stanley Hotel to MacGregor Ranch and the Elkhorn Lodge and stables,” says Lynda S. Vogel, executive director emeritus of the Cultural Arts Council. “We encourage the artists to be diverse in the subjects they choose.” This year’s participating artists include James Biggers, Cathy Goodale, David Harms, Peggy Immel, Kelly Kotary, Jeff Legg, Jason Sacran, and Cecy Turner. The festival also teams up with local Snowy Peaks Winery to produce wine labels in conjunction with the festival. This year Kelly Kotary’s FOREST PATTERNs was selected to grace the labels. A percentage of proceeds of the wine and poster sales go to support the Cultural Arts Council art programs in the community.

The festival boasts a plethora of other events that promise collectors an array of different activities. With a nocturne paint-out, fall-color paint-out, and downtown paint-out, there is some-thing for everyone in the months-long event. “The body of work that is created can be extremely diverse and intriguing,” Vogel says. “And for a patron who collects from this event every year, maybe they get a street scene, a nocturne, or maybe they get a piece of Estes Park history.” —Joe Kovack

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Featured in the September 2014 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
Southwest Art September 2014 print issue or digital download Or subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss a story!

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