Escondido, CA
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Plein-air exhibition planned for California Center for the Arts

Edgar Payne’s Sycamore in August is one of the plein-air works that will be on display at the California Center for the Arts, Escondido from March through May.

Edgar Payne’s Sycamore in August is one of the plein-air works that will be on display at the California Center for the Arts, Escondido from March through May.

The Art in Nature Alliance (ANA), a partnership of the California Center for the Arts, Escondido (The Center), Plein-Air Painters of America (PAPA), and the San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy (SDRVC), announce the 2015 Plein-Air exhibition and sale in San Diego County—“Art in Nature: Legacy of the Land,” featuring an exhibition and sale of work by the Plein-air Painters of America.

The exhibition of more than 120 paintings by 20 PAPA members will be held at the California Center for the Arts, Escondido, from March 22 —May 3. Admission is $8. Museum hours are Thursday — Sunday from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.. Tickets can be purchased online at

Twenty PAPA members will be painting for several days prior to a ticketed gala on March 21. Their “wetpaintings,” along with studio works created from earlier visits, will document a variety of coastal, rural, and urban scenes along the 55-mile San Dieguito River Valley watershed.

The gala is a fund-raiser for the Conservancy, which last year raised $45,000.

“We expect to go beyond that figure in 2015,” said PAPA President Gil Dellinger. The gala includes a lecture on collecting art by Jean Stern, author of California Light (2009) and director of the Irvine Museum, followed by an art sale.

“We are honored to once again represent visually the many habitats that comprise this magnificent landscape, including its inland and beach park areas,” Dellinger said, adding that, as a fundraiser, 35% of each sale goes to the non-profit Conservancy.

“This is a win-win event—as artists we get to paint in a dynamic landscape; art collectors get to enjoy that landscape through evocative paintings in their homes, while contributing to its protection and sustainability now and into the future through the efforts of SDRVC visionaries,” said Dellinger.

“While all PAPA members are committed to gathering information and painting outdoors, their styles, techniques, and approaches run the gamut,” said Dellinger. “There will be paintings that appeal to collectors of all persuasions.”

Participating artists are: Ken Auster, Laguna Beach; Kenn Backhaus, Robesonia, Penn.; John Budicin, San Bernardino, Lorenzo Chavez, Parker, Colo.; Gil Dellinger, Bend, Ore.; Kathleen Dunphy, Murphys; Lynn Gertenbach, Calabasas; Raleigh Kinney, Mesa, Ariz.; Joan LaRue, Tucson, Ariz.; Jean LeGassick, Silver City, Nev.; Robert Lemler, Phoenix, Ariz.; Joseph McGurl, Cataumet, Mass.; Ned Mueller, Renton, Wash.; Ralph Oberg, Montrose, Colo.; Ron Rencher, Canyon Lake, Tex.; Ray Roberts, Angels Camp; Randall Sexton, Vallejo; Matt Smith, Scottsdale, Ariz.; Kate Starling, Rockville, Utah; Brian Stewart, St. Paul, Minn.

The museum will be complemented by an exhibition of early California painters who documented the area prior to World War II, as well as artworks painted en plein aire by high school students from the surrounding Escondido School District will be on display at the museum’s Student Gallery Wall.

Additionally, there will be related events during the run of the exhibition, which include a talk by Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods (2005) and The Nature Principle (2011). The talk is titled “The Importance of the Human-nature Connection.”

For further information, visit the Center’s website at museum.

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