12th annual Buffalo Paintout and Gala seeking artist entrants

Mary Bryan Hood, Director, Owensboro Museum of Fine Art

The time of year is almost upon us for local and regional artists to scatter throughout Owensboro and Daviess County with easels and paint for the 12th annual Owensboro Museum of Fine Art Bronze Buffalo Festival and Gala.

The event takes place Sept. 26-28, and is a benefit for the OMFA that features an En Plein Air Paintout, which is a three-day tradition for artists to document Owensboro and Daviess County as they currently appear. Several artists come to the museum and pick up a map with from 20 to 30 suggested sites for them to paint, according to Mary Bryan Hood, OMFA executive director.

Some of the sites the museum suggests and that artists may choose for "en plein air" -- or painting outdoors -- include historical places, distilleries, major industries, parks and iconic architecture.

The museum has sent 1,500 invitations to artists in Kentucky and surrounding areas to enter into the event.

"Entries don't start coming in until early September," Hood said. "We have had people from northern Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee and from all across Kentucky."

She said the museum is careful about planning the festival and gala so as not to coincide with other similar events throughout the country as there are artists who participate and enter them in a "circuit situation."

She said the event is "always so successful," with one of the fun and interesting aspects being that artists come to town and paint prominent fixtures in the community that we see and know on a regular basis.

"But we see it differently from the perspective of the artist's eyes," she said.

Artists interested in entering the paintout can do so by completing the registration form found on the museum's website omfa.us or by calling the museum at 270-685-3181. The registration fee is $20 for artists who register before Sept. 15, and $35 after that date.

The three-day event is highlighted by an exhibition and gala where the paintings created by artists will be showcased for one night only. There will also be more than $5,000 in merit and purchase awards given to winning entries.

This festival is sponsored by Swedish Match and Atmos Energy Corporation.

Bobbie Hayse, bhayse@messenger-inquirer.com, 270-691-7315.

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