Friday, March 14, 2014

The California Impressionists and Today Plein Air


It's very exciting for me to be preparing for California to attend the Plein Air Convention & Expo in Monterey. There I will also exhibit three paintings. Then my plan is to honor the beauty of the Carmel peninsula, staying three extra days to workshop in the area and paint in the stunning coastal natural reserve of Point Lobos.

Carmel California Plein air Painter
Mary Agnes Yerkes,
California Impressionist Painter, (1886–1989).
"Plein-Air painting at Carmel’’, Carmel Beach, CA, circa 1920s.
For an European like me, with a background in the French Impressionism and the Italian Macchiaioli, it's intriguing to engage with the nature and the southern bright light that inspired the Early California plein air impressionists.

A Bridge Across the Ocean

Ever since the early '900 the connection with Europe was very tight. Painter Guy Rose, studied in Paris and lived in Giverny 1904-1912, becoming friend and pupil of Claude Monet in person. A colony took home in Giverny and the Giverny Group was first recognized in the US with an exhibition at New York's Madison Gallery in 1910.

After a decline lasting three decades due to the rising of modernism and the Great depression, -- a revival of the California plein air impressionism, took up in the 70's. In 1978 curator Nancy Moure released a Dictionary of Art and Artists in Southern California Before 1930 and curated a retrospective exhibition for the Laguna Beach Museum.

Continuing a Glorious History

Now publisher and painter Eric Rhoads is the enthusiast and proud promoter of the 3d Plein Air Convention & Expo. With his Plein Air Magazine and many other activities, he highly contributes to build up an integrated art industry and favor the cohesion of the artists' community.

I'll fly a long way from old Europe to be part of this history and make it a valuable step in my career. Which I want to share with YOU! After the Convention, join me in Carmel to paint out in the week end 11 - 13 April. Just write to my email workshop@francescofontana.com to share a great time together!

Live in painting! Francesco

PS. If you're in this business but ain't a painter, write to my email workshop@francescofontana.com to arrange a meeting between 7 and 13 April to plan new projects across the pond!

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