Plein Air Painters Show at COCC

The Central Oregon Community College presents 56 paintings in their library located on Campus Way through May 1.  

The French Term “plein air” means in the open air.  In the 19th century, the Barbizon school began a tradition of painters taking their work out of the studio and into the open air, but the Impressionist are best known for popularizing this technique with astounding success. The movement to paint outdoor was influenced by the new science of optics. The Impressionists noted that light on form could convey the impression of the landscape that was then expressed in color. They created an impression of the landscape rather than a realistic view. The Plein Air Painters of Oregon continue this art portraying the beauty of Oregon through oil, watercolor, acrylic and pastels.  

ontheedgeThese paintings showcase the skills of this talented group. The artists exhibiting are: Laura Jo Sherman, Bea Youngs, Carol Picknell, Gordon Baker, Kay Baker, Janet Rawlings, Lisa Hoffman-McCabe, Winnie Givot, Marilyn Dahlen, Louise Scott, JoAnn Brugess, Michelle Oberg, John O’Brien, Jennifer Ware-Kempcke, Ron Rauch, Sue Lyon-Manley, Nancy Misek, Margi Legowik, Shelly Wierzba, Charles Hardt Hedges, Linda Gaillard, Denise Rich and Ruth Schassberger.  

The Plein Air Painters have a seasonal schedule that ends in September or October. They meet weekly in either the morning or afternoon for 3 to 4 hours for most artists.  They explore locations in Oregon ranging from the Coast to areas of eastern Oregon with many sites in central Oregon.

To exhibit in this show, artist must have completed the painting at one of the scheduled sessions with only minimal additions done in the studio. These painters have braved cold, heat, mosquitoes and sometimes disparaging comments to bring their artistic vision to life. Each painting session attracts about 20 participants who range themselves throughout a location following what attracts them to a scene.

Their experience and skills vary but not their passion to create. Many of the painters employ a realistic style but some choose to capture the essence of a scene in a more impressionistic manner.  Many of the painters will take these studies back to the studio and use them as the basis for a more detailed and larger work that you will find hanging in our local galleries.

An artist is absorbing the emotion, local color and photographs during the painting session to inform their studio work or a painting can be complete and ready to hang that day.  Please come and absorb some of this excitement yourself. Please check with the library for hours and parking information by calling COCC.

If you would like to learn more about Plein Air Painters of Oregon just visit their website pleinairpaintersoforegon.org.  

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