For Immediate Release: Plein-air exhibition to feature historic paintings beautifully depicting local landscapes

Escondido, California — :

In addition to freshly-painted plein-air works, the upcoming exhibition at the California Center for the Arts, Escondido Museum will feature a gallery of historic pieces depicting local landscapes, on loan to complement and enhance “Second Spring–Conserving Nature in Life and Art.”

Several organizations are contributing to the show: City of San Diego, The Kinsella Library, La Jolla Historical Society, The University Club, The Irvine Museum and the Laguna Art Museum.

Running April 5-27, “Second Spring” is being presented by three local nonprofit organizations to celebrate the tradition of plein-air painting while also highlighting the beauty and history of the San Diego region, particularly the San Dieguito River Valley.

Under the banner of the Art in Nature Alliance, the San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy (SDRVC), the Plein-Air Painters of America (PAPA) and the California Center for the Arts, Escondido (the Center) will host 20 nationally known plein-air artists who will, over the course of a week, paint outdoors in the San Dieguito watershed in San Diego County, capturing the beautiful flora and fauna that inhabit the 55-mile-long river valley that stretches from the mountains to the coast. The fresh-from-the-field art will then be hung in the museum galleries at the Center.

As an interesting counterpoint to these contemporary works, and to provide perspective and context, “Second Spring” will include a complementary exhibition of more than 50 artworks by early California impressionist painters. The paintings, culled from private and public museum collections, document the San Diego area in the early 20th century. Among the featured artists are Maurice Braun (1877-1941), Charles Reiffel (1862-1942), Charles A. Fries (1854-1940) and Alfred R. Mitchell (1888-1972).

The Irvine Museum has agreed to loan nine works, which have been “seldom or rarely seen in San Diego,” according to Keith Colestock, member of the SDRVC Selections Committee.

The City of San Diego’s Commission for Arts and Culture will be loaning paintings as well, including two by Alfred Mitchell that are currently on display at the New Central Library.

The La Jolla Historical Society will provide “La Jolla Cove, La Jolla California” by Alson Skinner Clark and The University Club is loaning “Sunset on El Cajon (El Capitan)” by Alfred Mitchell, a painting that hasn’t been displayed to the general public since it was gifted to the Club by George Marston in the late 1920s.

The Laguna Art Museum will loan “Talk on the Beach” by Granville Redmond and “Spring in the Canyon” by William Wendt. The work of these and other artists will come from The Kinsella Library (Kinsella Family Collection), which will provide nine paintings for “Second Spring.”

The purpose of “Second Spring” is to inspire interest and appreciation for nature through the tradition of plein-air painting while also allowing Southern California residents to enjoy and bond with their local landscape through the eyes of three generations of artists. Concluding April 27, the exhibition will run through the official countywide celebration of Earth Day, resonating with and reinforcing April’s theme of preserving the natural world.

In addition, the show will serve as a fundraiser for the conservancy, as the newly created works will be up for sale during a ticketed Opening Gala at 6 p.m. on Sat., April 5 at the Center. Tickets are $100 per person and are available through the SDRVC at (858) 755-6956.

The exhibition will be officially unveiled to the general public on Sun., April 6. During the exhibition, the museum will be open Thursday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. Regular admission is $8.

About the Collaborating Organizations (the Art in Nature Alliance)

The San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy (SDRVC)

The San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy (, established in 1986, is a nonprofit with a membership of about 1,000. Its mission is to preserve, protect and share the natural and cultural resources of the San Dieguito River Valley through collaborative efforts to acquire lands, complete trails, restore habitats, establish educational programs, create interpretive centers, encourage recreation, and mobilize public support. The conservancy works closely with the San Dieguito River Park, established in 1989, in adding to the 60,000 protected acres within the 55-mile-long river valley, and completing its signature Coast to Crest Trail.

The Plein-Air Painters of America (PAPA)

The Plein-Air Painters of America ( is a small group of accomplished professionals who are dedicated to painting on-location. Since organizing in 1986 to exhibit wet-paint artworks in Avalon on Catalina Island, PAPA has put plein-air painting on the national stage, spawning seedlings that have flourished across the country. PAPA members are committed to the historic tradition of working directly from life and to striving to more fully explore and respond to the timeless beauty that surrounds us all. PAPA members exemplify excellence in vision and craftsmanship and actively share that knowledge by exhibiting in the finest museums across the nation.



About the California Center for the Arts, Escondido 

A 501(c)3 charitable organization, the Center’s creation was sparked by a civic vision—one that recognized the vital role that the arts play in strengthening and uniting the community. Our commitment to enriching lives and improving access to the arts, especially for low-income individuals and families, is exemplified through our extensive educational programming and robust series of free community events. The Center is guided by an enthusiastic Board of Trustees and passionate staff who are dedicated to furthering arts education and access, and to creating programs that provide cultural enrichment for residents of North County and beyond.

You can join this inspiring mission by becoming a donor.  Visit or email to start a conversation about how you or your company can make a difference right here and right now in your arts community.


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