Cedarburg Plein Air Festival: A Painting Event not to be Missed

by Chuck Bauer

WP&S members Mark Harmon (painting) and Chuck Bauer (drinking coffee) at the 2004 Plein Air festival in Cedarburg
Looking for a good location to paint en plein air? Cedarburg, a beautiful community just north of Milwaukee hosts an annual a week long festival of outdoor painting.
Last summer, I joined three other painters for a night of camping and two days of painting. It was a remarkable event, vibrant with the energy of the 175 artists who participated over the course of the week long painting festival. Imagine walking down a small town main street and seeing French easels and focused painters hard at work on every block, in every back alley, and in every green space!
A dream come true? Then this place is for you.
The Cedarburg Cultural Center on the main street will date stamp your painting surfaces each morning, and then you will receive a welcome packet of coupons to local establishments, and a map of the approved historic downtown painting areas which include ample park lands, and the beautiful Cedar River that descends 10 feet per mile (that is fast) over large boulders, and is a stunning sable color flowing briskly through the dappled light of mature overhanging trees. There is even a covered bridge.
Remarkably Cedarburg was saved from mutilation by a strong willed mayor in the 1950s and 60s who refused to approve any demolition permits and the result is a fully intact and vital commercial downtown that feels exactly like you are stepping back into a time when people did more with less, and when architectural detail, and a more human scale, was commonplace.
The eye is refreshed wherever you look.
Altogether perfect material for the observant and the artistic.
At the end of the week you may submit up to two framed works to compete simultaneously in both a silent auction and in an awards program that, thanks to a local bank, distributes $5,000 in prize money each year.
First prize is a $2,000 purchase award.
Now that is support for the arts!
This years event is scheduled for June 17-25. Registration in advance is encouraged.
For More information visit:
www.cedarburgartistsguild.com/pleinair.html



WP&S members Mark Harmon (painting) and Chuck Bauer (drinking coffee) at the 2004 Plein Air festival in Cedarburg Artists camping Artists camping Haynes paints at Plein Air festival in Cedarburg

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