August 4, 2011 Posted by Emily in Lifestyle, Local, Montana, News
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Creighton Block Gallery to hold summer art show of the Montana Painters Alliance

By Emily Stifler

The Montana Painters Alliance summer art show will bring work from professional plein air landscape painters to Big Sky, Aug. 4 – 25. Hosted by the Creighton Block Gallery in the Town Center, the event will feature 25 Montana artists.

Each will show two pieces, some of which were painted on location, and all will be images from the “greater Big Sky area, and the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem,” said Colin Mathews, gallery owner.

This spring, Creighton Block hosted a Montana Painters Alliance “paintout,” something the MPA does twice annually.

“The concept is that members gather in a location for three days to paint, to look at one another’s sketch books, to share ideas, companionship and camaraderie,” Mathews said. “It’s an idea that has a 100 year history in serious art clubs in the U.S.”

The paint-out was in May during a spell of poor weather, but the artists painted outside – en plein air – anyway. “I’ve done some of my better paintings in poor weather under adverse conditions,” said MPA President Diana Brady.

The artists enjoy these events because they can learn from each other, Brady said. “We’re a diverse group. Our “interests, styles, and painting mediums all vary. It’s a fun group to get together.”

“These artists spend so much time alone in studios painting that they rarely have a chance to visit with their fellow artists,” Mathews added.

Much of the work at this show will be from the spring’s paint-out. Approximately 10 of the artists will be at an Aug. 4 reception from 4:30 – 6:30 p.m.

The MPA was formed to assist and cooperate in fostering, stimulating, and encouraging the growing interest in plein air painting, landscape painting, and studio painting by Montana’s wealth of professional artists. The MPA offers in-state and out-of-state visitors the opportunity to observe Montana’s finest artists at work.