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Paint the Town 2014
Fifty artists from all over the east coast arrive in Chestertown for four days of painting the historic streetscapes, colorful Farmers Market, beautiful Chester River, and surrounding rural landscapes of Kent County. The Fifth Annual Paint the Town, scheduled for April 24 to April 27, is the premier plein air event sponsored by RiverArts.
The Wet Paint Show and Sale on Saturday, April 26 at the RiverArts galleries is the culmination of the first three days of painting the Kent County area. A reception opens at 5:30 and is free of charge to the public. However, patrons who have paid $25 will be invited to the Patron’s Preview reception at 5:00, giving them first choice of the paintings, and a chance to meet the artists in a smaller gathering. Select the link at left to become a patron.
The weekend will be filled with exciting activities and fun for visitors as well as artists. You can watch the artists painting all over town and the surrounding area and see the youngest artists participate in Little Plein Air Saturday morning in Fountain Park. You can join the fifty artists Saturday night at RiverArts for the opening reception of the Wet Paint Show and Sale. The art of the Little Plein Air artists will also be on display outside the gallery. Sunday morning at 11:00, is the Quick Draw Competition in Fountain Park. Lee Boynton will serve as judge for the competition. Winners will be announced at noon. You can participate in the judging, too, by voting for your favorite painting for the People’s Choice award.
Judge Lee Boynton is a painter of light. He studied with the late Impressionist master Henry Hensche at the Cape School of Art in Provincetown, MA early in his artistic career. Hensche taught Lee to see and paint the light, profoundly impacting the direction of his work.
Lee found further inspiration in the work of master Impressionists John Singer Sargent and Joquin Sorolla. Like these two painters, Lee paints in both the oil and watercolor mediums. Intrigued with how the Impressionist theories of color and light would translate to watercolor, a medium with a more translucent, etherial quality, Lee pioneered effective techniques for capturing the subtle effects of light with watercolor. He co-authored Painting the Impressionist Watercolor with Linda Gottlieb, one of his longtime watercolor students. It was published by Watson Guptill in 2004. The American Artist Magazine has featured Lee and his work in articles on technique and the painting of light.
Lee was instrumental in founding the Mid Atlantic Plein Air Painters Association in 2002, the hosting organization for Paint Annapolis. The success of this plein air painting competition, one of the first on the east coast, inspired other towns to adopt the idea of bringing artists together with the public in this way. He was the 2009 recipient of the Annie Award in recognition of his contributions in the field of the visual arts in Anne Arundel County, Maryland.
Lee has won top awards for his watercolor and oil paintings in Paint Annapolis, Plein Air Easton and the Wayne Plein Air Festival in Wayne, PA. His oil painting Thanksgiving Snow was selected for the American Impressionist Society 13th annual national juried exhibition in 2012.
Stay in the park after the Quick Draw to enjoy the annual Taste of the Town where you can sample the flavors of local chefs, local food, local wine and beer from 12:00 to 3:00.
A Second Look Exhibition will be on display in the Studio Gallery at RiverArts for the two weeks following Paint the Town. Last year, twenty-three paintings were sold at the Wet Paint Show and Sale so don’t wait for Second Look if you’re a serious buyer.
Last year’s plein air event was great fun. The artwork from the first three days of painting was on exhibit in the Wet Paint Show and Sale on Saturday, April 27. The fifty-five artists on exhibit that evening voted on the Best in Show individual painting and body of work. Ray Ewing was voted as the best body of work and Deborah Maklowski’s painting, “Red Barn,” won the best in show award.
At the Quick Draw Competition on April 28, Judge Diane Mullaly selected Michele “Morning Coffee” for the best in show award. Michele also won the People’s Choice award for the same painting. Brad Ross was selected as the 2nd place winner for his “High Street Shade.” Honorable Mentions were awarded to Marilyn Rose, David Diaz and Janice Kirsh.
Brad Ross wins 2nd place award in 2013 Quick Draw.