By John Chambless
Art was everywhere at the Chadds Ford Gallery on the evening of June 21 - both inside and outside.
For the opening of the Plein Air Exhibit, several artists chose places to paint on the grounds around the gallery, and from 4 to 8 p.m., visitors could look over their shoulders as the paintings took shape. The brand-new works were then added to more than 30 plein air paintings on display inside the gallery's central room.
The exhibit is made up of summer scenes of woodlands, streams, barns and homes - all lovely to look at and all well done.
There's an exquisite subtlety to Valerie Craig's "Last Call," a view of woods and field at dusk, with just the last sliver of sunlight illuminating distant clouds. Jacalyn Beam's "Flag Day" captures the sun-warmed wall of a home that has a vivid American flag hanging from the front porch. Paul Scarborough's "Murderkill Salt Marsh" is an expanse of orange-lit marshland that expertly captures the late afternoon light.
The haze of midsummer radiates from "Orchard Overlook" by Beverly Ford Evans, a view of a sun-baked valley and gently curving road with rolling hills in the distance. In "Brandywine Thaw," Valerie Craig renders the thin light of early spring with little white highlights on the rippling water - perhaps frost - that draw you into the chill of the scene.
Along with fine works by Roger Dale Brown, Beverly Ford Evans and Robert Stack, the Plein Air Exhibit is a lovely summation of summer days. It brings together six of the region's finest artists who enjoy working outdoors to bring a little bit of nature back inside for gallery viewers.
The Chadds Ford Gallery is at 1609 Baltimore Pike, Chadds Ford. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. Call 610-388-2412 or visitwww.awyethgallery.com.