By Seth Kinker,

The Arts, Culture, and Heritage Committee (ACHC) for the city of Dexter continued to discuss the 2019 Paint Dexter Plein Air Festival and their recommendations for the Dexter Art Gardens temporary sculpture display for the Art Selection Committee at their meeting on Apr. 9.

The Paint Dexter Plein Air Festival will be entering its seventh year when it takes place Aug. 12 – 17 as the festival invites artists to Dexter to render their interpretation of Dexter and the surrounding area via their talents with the paintings being sold at the end of the week.

Artist registration has been open since March and the ACHC will be taking registrations for professional artists through May and July for emerging artists. The ACHC allows the artists to self-select into what is appropriate for their level of competition.

“We have forms on the city website looking to get volunteers for people or business owners who want a painting of their places,” said city staff liaison to the ACHC, Justin Breyer. “We’ll invite an artist to come make a painting of your house and sell it as part of the festival, if you wanted to buy it you would come to the festival. We’re looking for folks willing to host artists, we get a lot of artists from out of the area. Out of state even. If they’re only making a few hundred off of painting sales, they don’t necessarily want to invest in a hotel for a week. We’re always looking for folks interested and willing to put up an artist in their house for a week.”

Previous artists are always invited back, last year the festival hit their maximum of 75 artists that can be accommodated. 35 spaces are reserved for professionals to apply and be juried in, with the rest of the spaces reserved for emerging artists.

On Apr. 9 the ACHC talked about the artist experience. They discussed what they could offer for artists to do that week outside of the painting they came to do.

Artist, or community events in general, were brought up. Things like taking a tour of the train museum or the historical museum, possibly even a tour of local breweries like the Jolly Pumpkin.

A welcoming event has been held every year with all of the artist and sponsors, this is another way to allow the artists to see Dexter

The ACHC also made their recommendations for the Arts Selection Committee (ASC) which was scheduled to meet Apr. 10.

The Dexter Art Gardens temporary sculpture display has been going on since 2014 and puts art in three locations around Dexter; across from the Marathon Station downtown, at the top of the stairs near the library coming up from Monument Park, and next to the LaFontaine Chevy dealer.

On Apr. 9 the ACHC made the recommendation that Excelerator by Ray Katz be located at Lafontaine Chevrolet. Rapture by Chris Plaisted located at the circular seating across from the Marathon station, and Large Wire Balls by Michael O’Reilly be located near the library.

If those aren’t available or suitable, the ACHC recommended two alternatives, Kind of Spades by Ray Katz for the circular seating and Play by Brad Eilering to be located near the library.

Once chosen by the ASC, the recommendation will be on the city council agenda for Apr. 22 for the final selection.

On May 1, the city sent out a notice regarding more information for artists wanting to be involved.

Per the city:

Calling all Artists!

Registration is OPEN for the 2019 Paint Dexter Plein Air Festival. Space is limited for both professional and emerging artists. This will be the final call for the Professional Artists category as the deadline is approaching fast, so please register soon to ensure your spot.

Artists from a variety of different mediums are welcome to participate. All work is to be done in a two-dimensional painting or drawing medium and no mechanical or photographic assistance is to be employed.

Please note the following important dates:

1) Professional artists must register by May 15th.

2) Professional artists that have registered must submit digital photos and biography by May 15th. See the Professional Artist Prospectus for details:

3) Emerging artists must register by July 1st.

4) The Festival and painting begins August 12th.

New components to this year’s festival:

-Paintings will be available for immediate sale on Friday and Saturday.

-Artists may deliver two (2) additional paintings, painted during the week, for reserve sale.

-Meet the Artists Wine Reception Friday evening.

-For more information and complete entry details, please see the following at our website:

Festival Timeline

Plein Air Competition

Quickdraw Competition

Artist Guide

Participation Requirements

For pictures and updates,

Like us on Facebook. Register here.

We hope you will join us in beautiful Dexter, Michigan for a fun week of fresh air and art sales.

Thank you,

Dexter Arts, Culture & Heritage Committee