“Plein Air Peconic VIII”

October 4 to 6, 2013

Artist Reception: Saturday, October 5, from 5 to  8 p.m.

Ashawagh Hall, 780 Springs Fireplace Road, East Hampton, NY

 

Plein Air Peconic, the artist group dedicated to helping the Peconic Land Trust conserve the natural beauty of the East End, presents “Plein Air Peconic VIII” this weekend. The highly anticipated annual exhibition and sale of landscape paintings and photographs takes place from October 4 to 6 at Ashawagh Hall in Springs in East Hampton, NY.

The public is invited to a wine reception with the artists on Saturday, October 5  from 5 to 8 p.m. The exhibition will be open on Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

All the work is for sale and a percentage of all sales will be donated to the Peconic Land Trust.

"It is natural for plein air painters and landscape photographers to want to see our beautiful lands, marshes and waterways stay open and free for all to enjoy," said Plein Air Peconic artist Gordon Matheson.

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"Cow Neck wetlands" by Kathryn Szoka. Photograph, 16 x 20 inches.

"Cow Neck wetlands" by Kathryn Szoka. Photograph, 16 x 20 inches.

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The artists of Plein Air Peconic (PAP) are: Casey Chalem Anderson, Susan D’Alessio, Aubrey Grainger, Anita Kusick, Michele Margit, Gordon Matheson, Joanne Rosko, Tom Steele, and Kathryn Szoka and Keith Mantell, who is a new member. “Plein Air Peconic VIII” will feature works by all members except for Steele and Kusick.

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"Dusk Dune" by Susan D. Alessio. Oil on linen, 18 x 24 inches.

"Dusk Dune" by Susan D. Alessio. Oil on linen, 18 x 24 inches.

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“Plein Air Peconic VIII” presents paintings and fine art photographs depicting East End landscapes including farm fields, meadows, wetlands and dunes. Many of these scenes focus on sites that have been conserved by the Peconic Land Trust in partnership with landowners, local governments, partner organizations, communities and donors.

Many of the conserved places are local farms that are crucial to our “farm to table” fresh food movement. By painting and photographing vistas of conserved land and other glorious open spaces on the East End, the artists call attention to what has already been accomplished by land conservation and the urgent need to protect vital resources before they disappear to development.

"Coming to a PAP show also means one can learn more about land conservation from the artists and especially from the employees of the Trust that attend the art shows," said Matheson. "Besides the newcomers to land conservation, many of the existing Trust supporters also attend the shows."

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"Fresh Pond" by Michele Margit.

"Fresh Pond" by Michele Margit.

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PAP and Peconic Land Trust (PLT) decide to join forces to draw attention to land preservation efforts and successes around eight years ago.

Rebecca Chapman, a VP of Peconic Land Trust, started the conversation with en plein air artists when she came to art shows organized by Matheson in 2003 to 2005 and found many paintings of farms and fields the PLT were interested in, recalled Matheson. Chapman believed the idea of artists and land conservationists combining forces was a good one. So did the artists, who were already focusing their art on the natural places of the East End, said Matheson.

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"Water Mill Dairy Barns, Here Today - Gone Tomorrow" by Gordon Matheson.

"Water Mill Dairy Barns, Here Today - Gone Tomorrow" by Gordon Matheson.

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The collaboration of the artist side began with Gordon and his friends Casey Anderson and Tom Steele. A plan was formulated and “the rest”, as Terry Wallace, a fine art dealer and historian likes to say, "is art history.”

When PAP formed in 2006, few if any permanent collaborations existed between artists and conservationists. The group continues to be unique, said Matheson. PAP is independent from the PLT but both groups frequently collaborate on projects spearheaded by PLT or PAP.

Wallace has compared PAP to historic artist groups by pointing to parallels between PAP and the Tile Club of New York City (who traveled to End End Towns via the Long Island Rail Road and stagecoach) and the Peconic Bay Impressionists of the North Fork. One of the annual "Plein Air Peconic" exhibitions was held at Wallace's art gallery in East Hampton (Wallace Gallery).

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"Field of Gold" by Keith Mantell. 10 x 20 inches.

"Field of Gold" by Keith Mantell. 10 x 20 inches.

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2013 marks the 30th anniversary year for PLT.

The non-profit organization was established in 1983 to conserve Long Island's working farms and natural lands. Since its inception, the nonprofit Trust has worked conscientiously with landowners, donors, local government, partner organizations, and communities to conserve nearly 11,000 acres of land on Long Island.

PLT's professional staff carries out the necessary research and planning to identify and implement alternatives to outright development. While working to conserve the productive farms, watersheds, woodlands, and beachfront of Long Island, the Trust is also protecting the unique rural heritage and natural resources of the region.

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"Accabonac Harbor" by Joanne Rosko. Photo by Gary Mamay.

"Accabonac Harbor" by Joanne Rosko. Photo by Gary Mamay.

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PAP support PLT"s efforts year-round by donating a proceeds of artwork sales by members in addition to money raised through the "Plein Air Peconic" annual exhibitions.

"Over the years, that amount has grown to a point where you could consider Plein Air Peconic as one of the Trust’s important monetary supporters," said Matheson.

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"Dune Beach" by Aubrey Grainger. Oil on panel, 9 x 10 inches.

"Dune Beach" by Aubrey Grainger. Oil on panel, 9 x 10 inches.

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One important ways PAP raises money for land preservation and conservation on the East End is through its group shows.

The annual "Plein Air Peconic" exhibition has been held at a variety of galleries and museums since inception. Hosting venues include Wallace Gallery in East Hampton; Grenning Gallery in Sag Harbor; the Southampton Historical Museum in Southampton; South Street Gallery in Greenport; and Ashawagh Hall in Springs, just outside of East Hampton Village.

In addition to the popular annual show, PAP holds several group shows each year. This has included traveling exhibitions held in venues across the East End.

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"On the Line  Dam Pond" by Casey Chalem Anderson. Oil on canvas, 6 x 4 feet.

"On the Line Dam Pond" by Casey Chalem Anderson. Oil on canvas, 6 x 4 feet.

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BASIC FACTS: “Plein Air Peconic VIII” will present artwork depicting East End landscapes made by members of Plein Air Peconic. A portion of  artwork sales benefits the Peconic Land Trust.

The exhibition will be held from October 4 to 6, 2013 at Ashawagh Hall, 780 Springs Fireplace Road,  East Hampton, NY. An Opening Reception will be held on Saturday, October 5, from 5 to 8 p.m.

"Plein Air Peconic VIII" will be open on Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Plein Air Peconic: www.pleinairpeconic.com

Peconic Land Trust: www.PeconicLandTrust.org or call 631.283.3195

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Copyright 2013 Hamptons Art Hub LLC. All rights reserved.

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