Outdoors, from observation, and in natural light
The Adirondack region has long been known as a wonderful, wild vacation retreat and the inspiration for numerous artists, writers, and musicians. The plein air painters who come and take part in this event know that very well, which is what attracts them from all over the country. The Adirondacks is the largest protected area east of the Mississippi, yet it's still within a day's drive of most of the major cities of the Northeast. There are mountains, lakes, rivers, bogs, forests, farms, and small communities — a full variety of subject matter for artists.
Held annually the 3rd week in August, fifty juried artists have four-and-a-half days to paint outdoors in the scenic wonders of the Saranac Lake area.
Not a painter? Not to worry. Spectators are encouraged to check out the creative process while enjoying the classic Adirondack surroundings.
Adirondack Plein Air Festival Events by Day, Aug 14 - 19, 2023
2023 Festival Schedule
SATURDAY & SUNDAY, AUGUST 12-13: Pre-Festival Plein Air Workshop with Mick McAndrews. See Workshop Page.
MONDAY AUGUST 14: CHECK IN – Artist Check-In and surface stamping, 9 am – 5 pm. at the Hotel Saranac, 100 Main St., Saranac Lake, NY. Easy entry to lobby from the back door on Academy Street. Painting may begin afterwards.
7-9 pm – “Meet the Artists” Reception planned for artists & nocturne painting opportunities, Hotel Saranac.
TUESDAY AUGUST 15: “Paint the VIC” Day. The Paul Smith’s College VIC is site for the first day of painting. Miles of trails, scenic views of mountains, old growth forest, bogs, streams, marsh, beaver lodges, Adirondack lean-tos, etc. Indoor facilities. Many good painting spots near the parking areas and building. May also paint on the nearby college campus. Get directions to the Black Pond part of the VIC. Trail maps available. BRING LUNCH. There may be a food truck but nearby food access is limited. Painting through the evening is encouraged.
WEDNESDAY AUGUST 16: “Paint the Adirondacks” Day. Artists are free to choose their own painting locations. Check materials and map in packet. Visitors invited to pick up maps and watch the artists at work.
THURSDAY AUGUST 17: “Paint the Town” Day. All artists are requested to spend the day in the Village to paint. They are also asked to produce one, small (11×14 or smaller), unframed painting for a Silent Auction which will begin at 5 pm. Free 5×7 canvases will be available. Artists receive 50% of the sale price. PAINTINGS (UNFRAMED) DUE AT 4 PM AT THE ADIRONDACK ARTISTS GUILD GALLERY, 52 Main St.
“3rd Thursday ArtWalk” – from 5 – 7:30 pm there will be artists and musicians throughout the village as part of our regular monthly ArtWalk. Stroll about, visit the various art venues, and enjoy the evening. Free live music at Berkeley Green. You do NOT have to participate in this, but if you wish to, feel free to set up and paint somewhere. It’s good publicity for the Plein Air Festival. Let people know about the Preview Party and Show & Sale.
FRIDAY AUGUST 18: “Paint the Saranac River” Day. We will have permission to paint the mountain views along the Saranac River.at the Saranac Lake Fish & Game Club in the morning and there are additional painting locations near by. Or artists may use this time to get paintings framed.
ARTISTS: FRAMED PAINTINGS DUE AT THE TOWN HALL, FRIDAY AUG 18 between 9 am and 2 pm – must be labeled and hung before 2 pm. ARTISTS HANG THEIR OWN WORK ON ASSIGNED WALLS. JURYING AT 3 pm.
PREVIEW PARTY 6 – 9 PM
A special opportunity to see several hundred new paintings created at the event. Tickets $20/person. Beer, wine & light food provided. Artists may attend at no cost. Awards presented at 7:30 pm. Buy Tickets HERE in advance, or at the door. Reception generously sponsored by AdkAction.org.
SATURDAY AUGUST 19: “QUICK DRAW COMPETITION” – Downtown Saranac Lake: Come watch and see who can create the best painting in just 2 hours time! Artists will set up and paint from 9 – 11 AM, then bring their easels and wet paintings to the steps in front of the Town Hall, 39 Main St, for judging. $250 prize.. Winner announced at 11:45.
SATURDAY AUGUST 19 – SHOW & SALE! 12 – 5 PM at the Town Hall. FREE Meet the artists and view the new paintings created for this event. “Paint the Town” Silent Auction concludes at 4 PM, Festival ends at 5.
For full event details visit: https://www.saranaclakeartworks.org/page/37815/plein-air-schedule
Sponsored by Saranac Lake ArtWorks.