Story and Photos by Floyd and Kathy Miller
The 20th Anniversary of the Augusta Plein Air Art Festival came to a close on Saturday, April 29 after ten days and some nights of painting, workshops and judging. The 2023 Plein Air had 125 registered artists from 15 states, with 27 new artists this year. There were 14 event hosts and four workshop hosts.
Awards were given out on Saturday morning. Lynn Buchheit, co-chair of the Augusta Plein Air Committee, thanked the community for their support of the event and those who housed 51 of the artists this year. The committee thanked the Harmonie Verein for the use of their facility for the pop-up sales all week and Ebenezer UCC in Augusta for the Pancake Breakfast served on Saturday morning. Lynn acknowledged the quality of the artwork produced this year was outstanding and thanked the artists for attending the 20th anniversary of the Festival.
The awards began with the announcement of the two $1000 scholarship recipients from The Greater Augusta Chamber of Commerce, Emma Wheeler and Leah Wheeler. Congratulations, Emma and Leah.
As Cindy Kedroski announced the final winners in each category, the judges explained why they chose the top winning entries.
For all the winners, judges and committee members, see the pictures and captions below.
The 20th Plein Air Art Festival was a tremendous success, nine months of planning and hard work by the committee and the community go into the success of the Festival every year. See you next year!Top Winners, from left,
Artists’ Choice - “Count Your Chickens” by Sarah Lorentz, Best of Show - “Kessler Barn” by Denny Dowdy and People’s Choice - “Katy Trail Splendor” by Gino Santa Maria. The Best of Show Award was sponsored by the Hoffman Family of Companies.
Pastel winners, from left,
2nd place - “Stone Ledge” by Alex Eisenzoph,
1st place - “Ain’t Nothing He Can’t Fix” by Katherine Martinez,
3rd place - “Will Paint for Honey” by Brent O’Connor and
Honorable Mention - “Path In Lake Sherwood” by Allison Laupp.
Acrylic Winners, from left,
3rd place - “In The Bottoms” by Farley Lewis,
1st place - “Hoffmann Gas Co” by Carlos Maldonado,
2nd place - “Dieselmatic 65”, Carlos Maldonado (held by Lynn Buchheit) and
Honorable Mention - “Field” by Craig Thomas.
Watercolor winners, from left,
2nd place - “Katy Trail at Dutzow MO" by Gary Beazley,
1st place - “Kessler Barn” by Denny Dowdy,
3rd place - “Downtown Defiance” by Denny Dowdy (held by Lynn Buchheit) and
Honerable Mention - “View of Femme Osage” by Alex Hamil.
Oil winners, from left, 3rd place - “Count Your Chickens” by Sarah Lorentz,
1st place - “Longing for Peace” by Nathan Brandner,
2nd place - “Clay House & Fire” by Troy Tatlock and
Honorable Mention - “Katy Trail Splendor” by Gino Santa Maria.
Final Judges, from left, Shawn Cornell, Joshua Been, and John Lasaster.
The 2023 Augusta Plein Air Committee Members, from left Cindy Kedroski, Ann Struckhoff, Susie Snyders,
JoAnn Milster, Vicki Gwinn, Kate Aufderheide, Mia Baker, Ranko Radoman and Lynn Buchheit (not pictured.)
The 2023 GACC Scholarship Winners and their parents, from left,
Shawna, Emma, Leah and Paul Wheeler.
Live music during the event - Whiskey Club Band.