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Maui Plein Air Painting Invitational starts Saturday

By Staff | Feb 11, 2010

Carleton Kinkade painted a beach scene at the 2009 “Pioneer Inn Lahaina Harbor Quick Draw.”

WEST MAUI — Beginning Saturday, Feb. 13, the week-long Maui Plein Air Painting Invitational will bring together 26 of Hawaii and the Mainland’s top plein air artists to capture Maui’s Upcountry vistas, pristine beaches, majestic mountains and historic towns.

Hawaii’s top plein air painting event offers visitors and local residents the opportunity to watch the artists at work, learn about outdoor painting and support art activities in the community.

Artists will open the event with the “Kickoff Paint Out” at D.T. Fleming Beach and Kapalua Bay on Saturday from noon to 3 p.m. The freshly painted works of art will be on sale at Village Galleries in The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua beginning at 4 p.m. on Feb. 13 and throughout the week.

The term plein air, a French phrase meaning “in the open air,” has long been associated with painting done outdoors directly from nature. This style of painting is often traced back to its first followers in 17th and 18th century Rome, followed by the French Impressionists in the mid- to late 19th century, and then to the California Impressionists in early 20th century America. 

From the beginning, the purpose of the plein air movement was to develop a deeper understanding of nature through close observation, and to learn how to represent the appearance of landscapes under the changing elements of light, atmosphere and weather.

Ronaldo Macedo drew a crowd at last year’s “Pacific’O Sunset Paint Out.” Photo by Maybelle Santos.

Jean Stern, executive director of the Irvine Museum in Irvine, California and a recognized authority on California Impressionism, will again serve as guest speaker and juror during the event. He will present a lecture and slideshow titled “American Masters: From Frederic Remington to Mark Rothko on Tuesday, Feb. 16, at 7 p.m. at the Pioneer Inn in Lahaina. The lecture is free and open to the public.

The week-long Maui Plein Air Painting Invitational is interspersed with free special events to gather the artists and public. The “Pacific’O Sunset Paint Out” at Kamehameha Iki Park on Wednesday, Feb. 16, is another opportunity to see all of the artists in the same vicinity. The artists will gather from 4 to 6 p.m. at the popular beach park next to 505 Front Street to capture the sunset and beach scenes.

At the “Pioneer Inn Lahaina Harbor Quick Draw,” slated in the harbor area on Friday, Feb. 19. from 9  to 11 a.m., the public has an opportunity to watch a painting being created from start to finish. The horn sounds at 9 a.m. sharp, and the artists have exactly two hours to complete a painting that will be on display later that night at the Maui No Ka ‘Oi Magazine Gala Reception at The Village Gallery.

Three of the best paintings from each artist, plus the Quick Draw painting, will be unveiled at 5 p.m. at the Maui No Ka ‘Oi Magazine Gala Reception at The Village Gallery at 120 Dickenson St. in Lahaina. Awards will be announced, and art collectors and lovers will have an opportunity to view and purchase the fresh work. Refreshments will also be served at the reception.

On Saturday, Feb. 20, the artists will replace paintings sold on Friday night, and the public will have another chance to interact with all of the artists and purchase work from the event at “Coffee and Pastries with the Artists” at The Village Gallery from 9 to 11 a.m. The show and sale ends at 9 p.m. that evening.

Stop by the Barnes & Noble Book Fair in Lahaina from Feb. 13-20 to support the invitational. Check out the art books, instructional and reference materials for children and adults, painting magazines, an array of children’s creative specialty books, games, puzzles and biographies of famous artists. All merchandise qualifies with few exceptions. When checking out, tell them you are supporting the Maui Plein Air Painting Invitational.

There are still a few openings for participating artist Ned Mueller’s workshop on Feb. 22-24. Contact Bonnie Fox at bonnie.fox@sympatico.ca for details.

The 2010 participating artists are George Allan of Maui, Ken Auster of California, Jacobus Baas of Oahu, Pierre Bouret of Kauai, Mark Brown of Oahu, Jan Bushart of Maui, Saim Caglayan of Kauai, Mike Carroll of Lanai, Joe Fletcher of Maui, Betty Hay Freeland of Maui, Darrell Hill of the Big Island, Debra Huse of California, Carleton Kinkade of Maui, Jim Lamb of Washington, Ronaldo Macedo of Maui, Clark G. Mitchell of California, Larry Moore of Florida, Ned Mueller of Washington, Billyo O’Donnell of Missouri, Colin Page of Maine, Macario Pascual of Maui, Mary Pettis of Minnesota, Scott Prior of California, Randall Sexton of California Marty Wessler of Kauai, Mary Whyte of South Carolina, and guest speaker and juror Jean Stern of The Irvine Museum, California.

All events are free and open to the public. For more information, visit www.MauiPleinAirPainting.com.