‘Painting the street scenes of Carmel’

Watch art created before your very eyes at the Carmel on Canvas Plein Air event – an open-air painting exhibition and competition on the sidewalks throughout the Carmel Arts & Design District, Midtown, Carmel City Center and the City Hall Japanese Gardens. More than three dozen artists from the Midwest, Maryland, South Carolina and other states will be at the event, which is free to spectators, runs Friday to Sunday, September 17-19.

“After we were forced to cancel last year’s event due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are excited to welcome back the many local and regional artists to Carmel on Canvas. This is a great event for our community and it highlights our beautiful architecture and landscapes through the eyes of our creative artists. It is especially entertaining for families with small children who we hope become inspired to create their own art,” said Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard.

Artists ranging from professionals to amateurs, including both teen and children’s divisions, will be painting at a variety of locations for the plein air event all day Friday and Saturday. Artists can register for the Plein Air Paint Out at the Indiana Design Center (200 South Range Line Road) from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday. The public is invited to come and watch the painters set up their easels and paint their chosen subjects. The artists’ works will be for sale, so you could negotiate a price before the paint is even dried!

A quick paint event will take place for registered artists on Saturday at the Carmel Farmers Market (2 Carter Green) where winning paintings will be determined by a community vote by market visitors. The winning artists will take home a $300 first place prize, a $200 second place award and a $100 third place spot, as well as the $50 child merit award.

Also on Saturday, children are able to paint at the Kids Zones from noon – 3 p.m., with two locations in the Arts & Design District, including Magdalena Gallery of Art (27 East Main Street) and Carmel Arts Council’s Children’s Art Gallery (40 West Main Street).

The plein air artworks created on Friday and Saturday will be judged by artist and art teacher Don Yang of Chicago. Born in Seoul, Korea, Yang trained at the American Academy of Art in Chicago, where he earned a BFA with honors and later an MFA with emphasis on fine art and traditional illustration. He has been teaching drawing, oil painting and anatomy in and around Chicago, while operating an independent art studio working as a freelance illustrator. Yang also serves as chairperson of Fine Art Department and Foundations Department at the American Academy of Art. His paintings and drawings are collected by art enthusiasts throughout the United States and Europe.

The Plein Air Reception and public viewing takes place at 5 p.m. on Saturday where the paintings will be available for viewing and for sale before the judging at 6 p.m. Artist awards include a $3,000 grand prize, $2,000 for second place, $1,500 for third and $1,000 for fourth. Award winners will be announced on Saturday at 6:30 p.m. along Artists Lane (also known as 2nd Avenue NW) between Sophia Square and the Monon Greenway. 

Sunday’s art fair will feature works created by Carmel on Canvas artists from noon – 4 p.m. It will be set up along Artists Row (2nd Avenue NW). Artists are encouraged to display works from the plein air event along with other works in their collection.

Carmel on Canvas artists also have the opportunity to compete for Purchase Awards by painting the sponsoring establishment and winning the listed monetary prize. Those winners will also be chosen on Saturday night. 

Thank you to the following Carmel Arts & Design District businesses for offering Purchase Awards:

Bazbeaux Pizza ($300)
Bub’s Burgers ($300)
Canine Cloud Nine ($250)
otel Carmichael ($300)
Indiana Design Center ($200)
Scott Osborne Sculpture at Carmel Clay Historical Society Depot ($400)
The Carrie Holle Group – Compass Real Estate ($200)
United Fidelity Bank ($500)

Thank you to our sponsors:

Carmel Arts Council
Chapman-Osborne Legacy Realtors
City of Carmel
Indiana Design Center
Promote Carmel

The following is a schedule of events. 
All events are open to the public.

Friday, September 17

  • 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.  All Day Plein Air Paint Begins: Registration & Check-in at Indiana Design Center (200 Range Line Road). Artists register and paint throughout the day in the Carmel Arts & Design District, Midtown, Carmel City Center and the City Hall Japanese Gardens. The public is encouraged to watch the artists create their work.

Saturday, September 18

  • 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. All Day Plein Air Paint Continues: Artists register and paint throughout the day in the District. Public is encouraged to watch the artists create their work. Musicians will be playing throughout the District.
  • 9 – 10:30 a.m. – Quick Paint at the Carmel Farmers Market (2 Carter Green).
  • 10:30 – 11 a.m. – Quick Paint “Community Choice” judging, awards to follow.
  • 4 - 5 p.m. – Plein Air Paintings turned in by artists to Artists’ Lane tent (2nd Avenue NW).
  • 5 – 6 p.m. – All Day Plein Air Reception and public viewing.
  • 6:30 p.m. – All Day Plein Air Award Ceremony.

Saturday Kids Zone:

  • Noon – 3 p.m. – Event volunteers will assist children ages 4-12 in creating a piece of art to take home.

Sunday, September 19

  • Noon – 4 p.m. – Art Fair in the District (Artists’ Lane – 2nd Avenue NW)

Public parking is available in the Carmel Lions Club lot (141 E. Main St.), Sophia Square parking garage (entrance off of 1st Avenue NW), Indiana Design Center parking garage (200 S. Range Line Rd.) or available on-street public parking. The Arts & Design District parking map may be downloaded by clicking here.

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