2017 International Challenge at Yosemite

California Plein Air Painters International Challenge Exhibition and Sale! Over $5,000 in cash and prizes; Open to all artists; Traveling Exhibit: Oakhurst Gateway to Yosemite; Ridgeline Gallery in Mariposa; 70% of sales proceeds to artist; Any landscape, seascape or urbanscape anywhere in the world; $45 for three images; Plein air and studio work accepted Exhibition dates: Sept 30 – October 22, 2017. Deadline is September 8, 2017 at midnight, PDT Don’t miss out! CLICK HERE to enter!

We are pleased to announce our 2017 International Challenge Exhibit at Yosemite. This event will feature some of the finest examples of landscape painting in the world. In addition to the exhibit, we have a variety of activities available including the Awards Ceremony, Artist Reception (open to the public), demonstrations, paintouts and workshops. Attendees will receive free access to Yosemite National Park to paint or just to sightsee.This is a cooperative effort between California Plein Air Painters, Visit Yosemite Madera County, Yosemite National Park, the Art Renewal Center and the Yosemite Gateway Inn.

There will be a special exhibit by our Signature Members, Painting Ambassadors and selected Finalists from the 2016 ARC International Salon. Juried artwork from an international base of outstanding artists will also be on display. There are Cash Awards, Merchandise Awards and Publication Awards for the top artwork in the show.


Scroll down to view information about the exhibit, lodging, events, workshops and demos and Yosemite Park information.


Click on the image at the left to view the Prospectus and Enter the Competition.

This Juried Exhibit will feature artwork from some of the finest artists from across the country..

This Event is made possible by a cooperative effort by California Plein Air Painters, Visit Yosemite Madera County, the Yosemite Gateway Inn, the Art Renewal Center and Yosemite National Park.


We have a great schedule of events planned for the opening weekend! Our Awards Ceremony will kick off at 10am in the Conference Center at the Yosemite Gateway Inn. Our featured speakers are Tonya Zenin, Founder of California Plein Air Painters, who will present the Awards to the winning artists; Scott Gediman, Public Relations Officer at Yosemite National Park, who will give us tips on some very special painting locations and give us free passes to the Park. Our Keynote Speaker is Carl Judson, President of Guerilla Painters and Judson Art Outfitters who will have a great presentation on his 30 years of adventure as '...the Indiana Jones of Plein Air Painting...'

The Exhibit kicks off at 1pm with a public Artist Reception followed by a demonstration by Master Pastelist Lisa Fricker who will demonstrate her award winning techniques from 2pm until 4pm. In addition to being a Signature Member of California Plein Air Painters, she has been awarded the title of Distinguished Pastelist by the Pastel Society of the West Coast and a Member of Excellence by the Southeastern Pastel Society. Her work has been published in The Best of Portrait Painting, The Best of Flower Painting and Painting More Creatively (North Light Books), as well as in Pastel Journal and Pastel Artist International magazines. Her portraiture has depicted 92 inductees into the Astronaut Hall of Fame.

On Sunday October 1, we will have a Quick Draw Competition. Artists can pick up their canvas at 9:00am. Completed paintings are due back at 2pm the same day. The winning artist will be selected and awarded the prize no later than 3pm. 

On the following weekend Master Artist Ned Mueller will conduct a Three-Day Workshop at Yosemite National Park on October 6 - 8. This workshop will focus on being able to see the wonderful variety of subjects that we can create paintings from! We will try and not see the world literally but to see it as an interesting arrangement of shapes and colors. We will then consider what we can add or subtract to make our painting more compelling. We will start out with smaller color and design studies and work larger depending on each persons level of growth. Ned is a Signature Member of California Plein Air Painters and is acknowledged nationally having achieved the designations of Master Artist by the American Impressionist Society and Oil Painters of America. Attendees will receive a detailed critique of their artwork prior to the start of the workshop.

We will be adding additional workshops, demonstrations, paintouts and other activites in the near future.



We are very grateful to the Best Western Plus Gateway Yosemite Inn for donating the use of their facilities for the Exhibit and also for reserving a pool of rooms for our Artists and Guests during this very busy time of year. We would also like to thank them for their cooperation in putting together this wonderful event. Their great amenities include conference facilities, dining areas, outdoor patios and other welcoming touches.

We are offering a discounted Event Package that includes Artwork Entry Fees, 2 Seats at the Awards Ceremony, Free Passes to Yosemite National Park and a Double Queen Room for two nights with all the trimmings including a full buffet-style breakfast following each night stayed. Artists can also opt for an additional night's stay and extra seating for the Awards Ceremony.

The Inn also features its own upscale dining facility and serves excellent meals.


A special Thank You to the tourism bureau for arranging the exhibit and promoting it throughout the area. We would also like to thank our other sponsors for contributing time, money and merchandise as part of the Awards program.


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Comment by Toni Williams on October 1, 2017 at 10:17am
Thank you for this wonderful opportunity!
Best success

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