Plein air group to exhibit at Old Sculpin Gallery

A Plein Air painting of Moshup‘s Beach. –Kate Taylor

For the first time in their 60-plus-year history, the Old Sculpin Gallery, home of the Martha’s Vineyard Art Association, will host a show by an outside, nonmember group.

For two weeks, beginning with an opening on Sunday, August 28, members of the group Aire MV will exhibit work all created en plein air over the course of the summer.

Aire MV was established four years ago as an informal group of artists who wanted to hone their skills painting landscapes on location. Every Tuesday throughout the summer, the eight artist members met at a different Island location to complete individual works onsite.

“Stepping away from whatever your usual process is really invigorates you and informs your work,” Aire MV member Valentine Estabrook said. “It demands that you create something in 90 minutes. You’re painting the light as it hits the subject. The light changes.”

The core members of the Aire MV group are Lowley Finnerty, Judith Howells, Kanta Lipsky, Marjorie Mason, Liz Taft, Kate Taylor, and Valentine Estabrook. The Old Sculpin show will also include work by guest artists Meg Mercier and Gail Rodney.

Every year since the group’s inception, the Aire MV artists have held an end of the summer exhibition at a different venue, which they have rented for the show. This year, the group members are pleased to exhibit in an established gallery. “Having the space arranged ahead of time has really helped us to focus on our painting this year,” Ms. Estabrook said.

Along with the opening reception, the group will hold a handful of other events throughout the duration of the show. On Tuesday, August 30, the artists will gather on the lawn of the Harbor View Hotel for a painting demo. Guests are encouraged to speak with the artists and watch them paint the Edgartown Lighthouse and other vistas. The Harbor View paintings will be hung at the Old Sculpin Gallery for the second week of the show, with another reception spotlighting the new work on Sunday, Sept. 4. Both receptions will feature refreshments, and music by Willy Mason.

The group will also offer two educational opportunities. On Thursday, Sept. 1, Aire MV artists will lead a class in still-life painting in the upstairs studio space of the Old Sculpin. All supplies needed will be included in the $15 fee.

And last, the Aire MV show will end with a closing night party on Friday, Sept. 9.

All work will be on sale for the duration of the show. Artists will split the profits with the Martha’s Vineyard Art Association.

Opening reception: Sunday, August 28, 5 to 7 pm, Old Sculpin Gallery, Edgartown. Plein air demo: Tuesday, August 30, 6 to 7:30 pm, Harbor View Hotel, Edgartown. Paint with the Artists: Thursday, Sept. 1, 6 to 8 pm, Old Sculpin Gallery, Edgartown. Registration required. $15.

Plein Air Reception: Sunday, Sept. 4, 5 to 7 pm, Old Sculpin Gallery, Edgartown.

Artist Lecture and Demonstration with Marjorie Mason: Tuesday, Sept. 6, 6-7 pm, Old Sculpin Gallery, Edgartown.

Plein Air Closing-Night Party: Friday, Sept. 9, 7 to 9 pm, Old Sculpin Gallery, Edgartown. For more information, visit