Knoxville Museum of Art Fundraiser: “Artists on Location” Plein Air Week and Sale

Rachael taking pics of her art before opening reception the evening of April 22, 2023.

I just got back from painting in Knoxville, TN for a week at the KMA, “Artists on Location” event, which benefits the Knoxville Museum of Art. I applied several months ago and was juried in with a great group of artists. We all painted the environs of the area, framed our work and showed it on Saturday night, April 22, 2023.

The artists each had a space of 4′ x 8′ and I hung nine paintings up. We were allowed to bring in one painting from our studio. I brought a painting of Knoxville which I had completed in March. It’s a large painting, 30 x 40″ of the Henley Street Bridge, the Sunsphere and the “Three Rivers Rambler” train that travels along the Tennessee River.

Painting, “Three Rivers Rambler,” 30 x 40″ oil on panel by Rachael McCampbell

The other 8 paintings were completed between Monday morning (after our orientation meeting) and Friday afternoon. I don’t think I’ve ever painted that fast! One evening I joined Laurie and Rick Dover and other other artists on the rooftop of the Hyatt hotel to take in the stunning views and have a glass of wine. Following that event, my sister Janet joined me to paint a nocturne painting of the Tennessee Theatre sign on Gay Street in Knoxville.

My artwork at KMA show April 22, 2023

Another night there was an amazing party for the artists and the KMA folks at Leslie Parent’s beautiful home. I loved seeing her fantastic art collection!  Judge/artist Don Demers painted a demo of an area of Leslie’s garden. It was lovely! And on another evening, I attended a small reunion of high school friends at the Pressley’s home.  Then we all attended the big opening on Saturday where I met so many great folks who took my artwork home. It was an amazing week and I was a happy/tired artist at the end of it!

Historic Westwood, Knoxville, TN

Here are some of the photos I took of the different locations I chose to paint. We all signed up for one place to paint, but other than that, we could go wherever we wanted to go. Living in Nashville, I wasn’t familiar with all the places they had chosen for the artists to consider. It was a lovely experience getting to travel around and check out all these parks and spots I’d never seen. Even though Knoxville is my hometown, I realized that I had a lot to learn about it and much to explore.

I have much gratitude to the Guild and the Knoxville Museum of Art and all the  amazing volunteers who worked so hard to make this event a success. I was so impressed with their enthusiasm and quality work.





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Rachael McCampbell