Have you ever wondered what plein air painters do west of the Mississippi? It may come as a surprise, but Minnesotan painters are not too dissimilar from you or me. I mean, yeah, they drink their water out of a drinking fountain like a bunch of lunatics instead of using a bubbler like God intended. But it could be worse—they could be from Illinois.
Having done some plein air-ing in the Land of 10,000 Lakes on more than one occasion, I have to say, there are some amazing artists over there and equally amazing arts organizations. One such organization is the White Bear Center for the Arts.
The WBCA, which is on the north end of the Twin Cities, does it all. They host community events, they have an extensive class schedule covering every medium you could care to learn about, and they put on multiple top-notch exhibitions throughout the year.
In 2020, the WBCA put on the 1st annual Into Nature plein air exhibition. Because of travel restrictions and social distancing measures the event was held online with a virtual awards ceremony and everything. Because the show was online—and this was lost on me until I actually saw the show—it could be an international show. And it absolutely was! The 72 artists in the show represented 18 states and 8 countries. You’d be hard pressed to find such a wide variety of landscapes depicted in a single show. The event was viewed by 16,880 people worldwide. Check out the 2020 event here: https://whitebeararts.org/into-nature/
Well, it’s now 2021, and the WBCA is back at it. They’re accepting submissions for the 2nd Annual Into Nature plein air exhibition. They’ve got a few not-too-shabby jurors in Andy Evansen, Marc Hanson, and Judy Palermo. And of course, there’s over $4,000 in prize money!
Submissions must originate from a plein air study or plein air experience in 2021 but may be completed in studio. This adds an extra dimension to the show, having energetic, gestural field sketches along with more polished studio work.
The deadline to submit is July 6th, so don’t miss out on this fantastic event! They won’t even make you wear a Vikings jersey (though you should probably listen to at least one Prince song.) 2021 Into Nature