Every weekend, good weather or bad, members of the Kansas City Plein Air Coterie meet in the great outdoors to paint ("en plein air" means "in plain air").
Though originally geared to the needs of professional artists, twice a year the Kansas City Plein Air Coterie invites everyone -- professionals, amateurs, and wannabes -- to participate by creating art and displaying it for one another and the public.
For its next "open session," the Coterie meets on Saturday, September 21, 2013, at noon on the Rooftop Terrace of the Central Library, 10 W. 14th St.
Grab your art supplies and show up -- the general public is invited to participate. (Or just show up. Some art supplies will be made available to participants.)
The group's leader is Robert Bingaman, a lecturer in the Painting Department at the University of Kansas, who more than a year ago decided he and other artists needed to provide an alternative to their studio practices by getting outside and drawing in the fresh air.
"Despite the difficulty," Bingaman says, "we found it invigorating, amusing, and rewarding. In the meantime, we had piqued the interest of our peers, who for the most part had relegated painting outdoors to 'Sunday Painting,' a connotation avoided by serious artists.
"We've produced hundreds of individual works of art. Artists and non-artists alike have joined us, and I think we've quietly and consistently done something wonderful for Kansas City. We have highlighted our city's civic landmarks, and we have reminded citizens that any street corner is worthy of painting. It has changed our lives."
An earlier Kansas City Plein Air Coterie open session drew nearly 150 painters to the Nelson Gallery, where guests saw demonstrations on painting from observation and tried their own hands at creating art.
In the event of rain, the session will be rescheduled for Sunday, September 22, 2013.
Admission is free. Free parking is available in the Library District parking garage at 10th & Baltimore.