Hilo’s Wailoa Arts &Cultural Center will open the New Year with “Big Island Plein Air,” when 40 artists from around Hawaii Island will fill both floors of the center with their impressionist paintings. The public is invited to an opening reception from 5 to 7 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 3. The exhibit will be on display through Jan. 30.
Plein Air — French for “open air” — painting became popular in the early 19th century in both Europe and America when paint manufacturers made a wide range of pre-mixed oil pigments available for the first time. At the same time, the easily transportable box easel, or pochade (quick sketch) box, was developed. Artists could finally take their work into the field with ease. Plein air artists paint on location in natural light, working quickly to capture the essence (impression) of a scene, Depending on the light and weather, the paintings are usually done in one session. No other form of painting is as exciting.
Featured artists in this exhibit will be Christine Ahia, Bob Appleman, Cosette Bonjour, Rod Cameron, Thinam Carrol, Lynn Chapman, Anne Diaz, Michael Donenfeld, Felicia Fry, Tuko Fujisaki, Jeannie Garcia, Carol Greenwell, Ann Guth, Eide Hansamut, Hideyo Harada, Dick Harrison, Randy Hasson, Peter Heineman, Sherry Hendersen, David Hubbard, Peter Jefferson, Arthur Johnsen, Diane Kent, Jan Marrack, Gil Mendez, Marilyn Montgomery, Melody Moore, Lynn Nakkim, Christal Nylin, Ilmar Reinvald, Richard Rochkovsky, Ginger Sandell, Jerome Sasaki, Mary Sky Schoolcraft, Sunny Seal, Leslie Sears, Chuck Snyder, Annabel Spielman, Barton St. Armand, David Terry, Robert Weiss, Barbara Williams and William Wingert.
In addition to its regular hours, the Wailoa Arts &Cultural Center will also be open to the public on each of the four Saturdays during January. Each Saturday will feature painting demonstrations and instruction, giveaways and guided art walks through the exhibition. Call Wailoa Center for more information at 933-0416.