Show Preview | Plein Air for the Park

Moose, WY
Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center, July 12-16

Ann Larsen, Fisherman’s Paradise, oil, 12 x 16.

Ann Larsen, Fisherman’s Paradise, oil, 12 x 16.

This story was featured in the July 2017 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art  July 2017 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story.

On Monday, July 3, 40 nationally recognized plein-air artists venture into the wilderness areas near Jackson, WY, to begin painting for the sixth annual Plein Air for the Park event. Members and guests of the Rocky Mountain Plein Air Painters render the scenic splendor of one of America’s most beloved national parks and then, in partnership with the Grand Teton Association, present the works in a gallery show in the park’s visitor center.

On Wednesday, July 12, collectors get their first look at some 300 landscape and wildlife works by RMPAP member artists including Lamya Deeb, Peggy Immel, Wes Newton, and Kathryn Mapes Turner, as well as guest artists Susan Blackwood, Howard Friedland, and James McGrew. A gala reception begins at 7 p.m. that evening, and awards are presented. This year Scott Jones, director of Legacy Galleries, serves as judge. The works remain on view at the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center through Sunday, July 16. “Artists continue to paint through Saturday,” notes RMPAP president Jake Gaedtke. “As paintings sell, more work goes up.”

Several painting demonstrations are scheduled both in and around the park, and a Quick Draw takes place on Saturday, July 15, from 9 to 11 a.m. at Menor’s Ferry. All events are free and open to the public.

For participating artist Eric Jacobsen, being part of the history of wilderness painters is powerfully meaningful. Having grown up in the East, Jacobsen says, he approaches this landscape a little differently than many western artists. “In the Northeast your world is small, but in the West, the physical space is vast. I am used to dividing up space in a certain way,” he says, and this leads him to paint more intimate scenes within the greater landscape.

New York painter Ann Larsen leans toward water scenes. “You’re in the Tetons and everybody is going to paint the Tetons,” she says. But for many collectors those peaks need to be depicted very precisely. “I don’t have the patience to get every glacier just so.” Instead she focuses on “creeks, the Snake River, the rocks, and the waterfalls. If you hike up to some of the lakes, it’s just spectacular. You can’t find better scenery,” she says.

Unable to attend in person? Visit the RMPAP and GTA Facebook and Instagram pages, where artist interviews and videos are posted throughout the event. If you see a painting you’re interested in, you can contact the association and purchase it.

Gaedtke says, “When a collector buys a painting at this show, the collector gets a really great painting from a well-known artist, and proceeds from the sale go back to the park for education programs and conservation. I can’t think of anything that could be better than contributing to that cause.” —Laura Rintala

contact information
370.739.3606
www.pleinairforthepark.org

This story was featured in the July 2017 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art  July 2017 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story.

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