News and Events
The Weisman Museum of Art Hosts “On Location in Malibu” Exhibit
The Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art at Pepperdine University will debut their new exhibition of original art, titled “On Location in Malibu 2012: Paintings by the California Art Club,” with an opening reception to meet the artists on Saturday, May 19. The public reception will take place from 5 to 7 p.m. free of charge to officially open the exhibition, which will remain on display until August 4.
On Location in Malibu 2012 is the fifth in a series of triennial exhibitions that began in 1999. It consists of over 70 paintings of Malibu created by artist-members of the California Art Club, the oldest continually operating art association in the state. Many were produced over the past year especially for this exhibition.
The majority of the paintings were done in the spirit of "plein-air." This term, derived from the French for "open air," refers to landscape paintings executed outdoors. By working on the spot and directly in front of the subject, the artist becomes immersed in the scene and setting. A trained and sensitive realist painter prefers to work on location because he or she can capture subtle nuances of lighting and atmosphere that are lost in photographs. The resulting plein-air paintings display both a rigor of honest perception and a poetry of subjective interpretation that give these works their broad appeal.
Plein-air painting became an important technique in France in the mid 19th century, when artists working in the Barbizon and Impressionist styles chose to take their easels outdoors in order to capture natural light. This practice was adopted in the first decades of the 20th century by some California artists who found the technique well suited to recording the brilliant atmospheric effects of the Golden State. In the past two decades it has enjoyed a revival of popularity in the hands of new generations of artists who have once again embraced representational art and traditional realism.
The California Art Club was founded in 1909 by members of the first generation of California Impressionists such as Edgar Payne, Guy Rose, and William Wendt. Current members remain true to the principles of the founders by continuing to explore the possibilities of plein-air painting.
The paintings in On Location in Malibu capture Malibu's startling variety of picturesque scenery, from idyllic beaches to craggy canyons and mountains. They include busy thoroughfares such as the legendary Pacific Coast Highway as well as remote canyon hideaways. Although the technique of plein-air painting is over 100 years old, the art in this exhibition reveals that the style is flexible and resilient. Each artist has his or her own stylistic approach, creating works that seem fresh, new, and vital.
Over 50 artists are represented in On Location in Malibu 2012. They live in areas throughout the state and range in experience from seasoned professionals to younger talents who have recently become California Art Club members. All of these painters are acknowledged to be among the best representational artists working in the state today.
Art in the exhibition is available for purchase; sales will benefit the California Art Club and the Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art. Works are on view at the Weisman Museum in the Gregg G. Juarez Gallery, West Gallery, and Ron Wilson-Designer Gallery.
For more information about this exhibit, contact the Weisman Museum of (310) 506-4851, or visit the Center for Arts website.