Art in the Open
The 11th Art In the Open Festival takes place this month in Co. Wexford. The festival has grown to a 10 day internationally recognized event with close to 200 artists taking part. Wexford’s Art In The Open attracts some of the best outdoor painters from around the globe. Renowned for its friendliness and relaxed atmosphere festival participants can be seen painting the wonderful Sunny South-East’s landscapes leading up to the massive exhibition in Greenacres Gallery which opens at 3pm Bank Holiday Sunday 5th and continues throughout Bank Holiday Monday 6th with something to appeal to all tastes and budgets.
Selected works by up to 200 artists taking part in the 11th Art in the Open plein air painting festival go on show in Greenacres Gallery, Wexford on Sunday 5th August. This event has grown to become the largest outdoor landscape painting festival in Europe and attracts internationally known professional artists as well as many amateurs eager to learn. For each of 7 days, busy artists will visit a different location throughout the south east, painting the landscapes they find there and dealing with whatever the weather may hold. There is even a nocturnal session planned on Thursday 2nd August on Wexford Quayside. At the end of the week each artist makes a selection of their best work to include in the show. The exhibition offers awards totalling €5000 and a prestigious first place purchase award to become part of the mayoral collection of Wexford County Council. Visiting artists in 2018 include watercolourist Keiko Tanabe from Japan, oil painter Haidee-Jo Summers from the UK, Finland’s Antti Rautiola and Stewart White from the USA. For members of the public it is a unique opportunity to see artists at work and the exhibition offers the chance to see and purchase the best of the work. The festival will sign off with a paint-out in Merrion Square, Dublin on Tuesday 7th August, as the artists make a special visit to the National Gallery to take in the Roderic O’Conor exhibition. Look out for a forest of easels to celebrate Ireland’s great post-impressionist in Merrion Square in the afternoon.
The paint out locations this year are Duncannon Beach, Artramon Country House & Farm, the picturesque village of Clonegal & Huntington Castle, Rosslare Harbour & Safe, Bunclody, incorporating the beautiful NewtownBarry House and grounds. The festival will top and tail in Wexford town and on Saturday 4th August it will host the popular charity event, The Quick Draw, which is a timed 2-hour paint out in the Bullring and surrounding area of Wexford town, the proceeds of which will go to the Wexford Cottage Autism Society this year. This is a very popular event with both the artists and public and raises awareness and funds for its chosen charity each year. The finished paintings are judged for prizes and available to purchase from the easel at bargain prices.
The workshops/masterclasses are very popular with the artists and are tutored by some of the world’s finest Plein Air Artists. These are available to book in advance and fill up quickly, so don’t miss out. Another new departure for Art in the Open is the introduction of a Sketching & Vlogging Workshop at the beginning of the festival on Saturday 28th July at Wexford Library.
A major highlight for all the visiting artists is the annual BBQ hosted by T.Morris Pub in Wexford Town and the night continues with lots of Guinness, dancing and a chance to make new friends or rekindle friendships from the previous festivals. Art in the Open is renowned for its friendliness and wonderful painting landscapes so it’s no wonder artists from all over the globe return regularly.