Outdoor Painters of Minnesota is a 501(c)3 charitable nonprofit formed to promote and share the practice of outdoor (plein air) painting. We are governed by an all-volunteer board of directors. Our 2023 membership is about 200, and we welcome new members of all backgrounds at every level of experience. OPM strives to coordinate outdoor painting activities, develop opportunities to exhibit together, educate both artists and non-artists in plein air painting, and inspire awareness of the beauty found in nature through painting outdoors.
News | Exhibits | Events
OPM Member Show at FrameWorks Gallery
Paint-Outs during 2024 Art Shanty Projects on Bde Unma/Lake Harriet
Art Shanty Village on Bde Unma/Lake Harriet
Saturday, January 20 and Sunday, January 28, 2024
12:00pm – 3:00pm
OPM is deploying winter painters again in 2024 for Art Shanty Projects' on-ice festival. We will have two three-hour paint-outs when artists may paint scenes wild and weird while enjoying the company of fellow artists and winter-curious visitors. Our theme this year is "Still Life Painting when Life Won't Stand Still." We'll use colored balloons to demonstrate color, light and shadows against the snow.
All are welcome to come out and paint. We need 3-5 volunteers at each paint-out to help set up and supervise our traditional yellow Berton Box public painting activities. They will receive a $50 honorarium from OPM's grant. Also, for ASP's 20th anniversary, we will display a retrospective exhibit of previous years' paintings on a zip line strung between our Berton Boxes. Alumni of this fun winter festival and paint-outs are encouraged to bring unframed paintings from past years' performances. We'll use felt swatches and binder clips to hang them on the zip line gallery. Bring your bussiness/gallery card or postcards too, to clip on the back so that visitors can contact and follow your work.
Moments of Memory: 2024 MPAC Exhibit at the Bell Museum
The Minnesota Plein Air Collective's second annual exhibit will be held from January 27 to May 26, 2024 at the Bell Museum, the State's official natural history museum on the University of Minnesota's Saint Paul campus. The Bell is well known to plein air painters for its famous collection of dioramas painted by the artist Francis Lee Jaques. The exhibit will last several months and incorporate audience engagement activities including artist-guided tours, a Quick Paint event, Berton Box painting activities, and a public reception.
Opening Event: Saturday, January 27, 2024 • 10am-2pm
"Paint with a Painter:" the public is invited to understand and try painting from life. Berton Boxes on stands facing windows and additional painting stations at classroom tables with chairs will be provided. OPM members and participating MPAC painters are invited to volunteer to demonstrate painting "indoor plein air" or outdoors as a "winter plein air" demonstration, or to help supervise public art activities and engage with visitors.
2024 Winter Plein Air Retreat: March 3-8, 2024
Cost: $425 all inclusive (lodging, meals, guides, and use of snowshoes and skis). Optional $15 for dog-sledding.
Retreat: March 3-8, 2024 at YMCA Camp Menogyn
55 Menogyn Trail, Grand Marais, MN
Opening Reception: 5-7pm Friday, March 8, 2024
Exhibit: March 8-24, 2024
Johnson Heritage Post Art Gallery
115 W. Wisconsin St
Grant Marais, MN
Winter Plein Air is an annual painting expedition to YMCA Camp Menogyn at an entry to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Painters spend 5 days and nights in a relaxed, unstructured setting, with daily paint-outs and camaraderie around the fireplace in the lodge. An exhibit of paintings created is mounted afterward at JHP in Grand Marais. Painters sleep in shared bunk rooms with heat and electricity, but no running water except in the dining hall. Meals are family style. Enjoy indoor or outdoor painting, hikes, snowshoe/skiing, ice fishing, and dog sledding.
Want to host a paint-out (or indoor paint-in)?
Contact OPM's paint-out director, Matt Kania, to suggest a good place and time to bring painters together.