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Plein air painters will capture the scenery at The Broadmoor Fridays through Sundays in July. Works will be available for purchase.

Something’s magical about watching the creative process unfold in front of you.

Here’s a chance to see with the eyes of an artist through July during The Broadmoor Art Experience. More than 55 nationally known artists will flock to the Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five-Diamond resort and Cheyenne Mountain Zoo on the city’s southwest side to capture the gorgeous scenery that attracts tourists from around the world and makes locals grateful for their own good luck.

Notable names include Sandy Scott, Gerald Balciar, Margery Torrey, Nancy Chaboun, Benjamin Wu, Ovanes Berberian and Bill Nebeker.

“There’s a good collection of artists we’ve assembled,” said Jamie Oberloh, director of Broadmoor Galleries at The Broadmoor. “You don’t usually see these artists at gallery events. You have to attend museum events.”

Painters will be scattered around the hotel grounds, while sculptors will craft animals out of clay at the zoo Fridays through Sundays through July 28. Visiting The Broadmoor is free, but those who head up the mountain will have to pony up zoo admission.

The four-weekend event is a response to last year’s uber-popular Plein Air Weekend, which featured three days of plein air artists painting outside from real life. This year’s event has expanded to plein air purists and non-plein air artists, those who might need to finish their painting or sculpture in their home studios. All works created during the month will be available for sale. Feel free to stake your claim at any point during the process. And if the new pieces don’t resonate, artists will have older works available for sale.

“At the turn of the century, artists did plein air because there were no cameras,” said Oberloh. “They would go out into a field and paint from life. It was the only way to bring the outside inside. Plein air is usually pretty fast. It’s this honest true depiction. There’s no artist interpretation where they’re trying to change the landscape. They’re painting what they see.”

Artists should be fairly easy to spot on site, what with their easels, brushes and palettes of pigmented paints. But if you can’t zero in on one, you can check in at The Broadmoor Galleries. Feel free to chat up the creators about their process and work. They expect audience interaction, usually of the effusive kind in response to the creativity happening right in front of the observers.

“Because they can’t do it,” Oberloh said about plein air painting’s popularity with nonartists. “People say, ‘I can’t even draw a stick figure.’ And to watch pieces unfold out of nowhere, it’s like magic, and to see how quick and proficient some of these artists are.”


Contact the writer: 636-0270

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