Art & Music

Plein Air Paint Out Amongst the Perennials

See artists capture the natural light of the landscape.

Stroll through the gardens while the region’s artists set up their easels as they paint en plein air, capturing their favorite landscapes throughout the gardens and groves, showcasing the essence of the fauna and flora that calls the Arboretum home!

June 4, 9:00 am to 1:30 pm

We invite artists of all ages and skill levels to the 3rd annual Paint Out!

About the “Plein Air” Tradition
The “plein air” tradition, or “en plein air,” is a French term meaning “in the open air.” Since the mid-19th Century and the advent of portable painting supplies like the paint tube and box easels, artists have taken to the outdoors. The plein air movement brought artists out of their studios and into the natural light.

What to Expect
On site activities will include:

  • Art activities for children from 9:00 am to 12 p.m.
  • Two student art instruction groups
  • Live entertainment of harps and violin and celloists.
  • Food trucks on site from 9 a.m. to 1:30p.m.

Artists will choose or be assigned a location in the May Arboretum and Rancho San Rafael Park in which to paint in the medium of their choice.

Sponsorship for student artists is available on a first-come-first-served basis.

The public is invited to wander and view art in progress. A large map indicating artists’ locations will be available for viewing at the Registration Area.

At 12:30 pm, artists and the public will gather to display the works. Artists can choose whether to put a price on their painting for sale, to participate in a silent auction, or to display without selling. 70 percent of sales go to the artist, the remainder to support the May Arboretum Society’s support of the Arboretum.

8:30-9:00 Artists check in, get map, set up
9:00-12:00 Artists paint in the Arboretum
9:00-12:00: Artful Play: free painting activity for children and families
9:00-10:30: First student group of art instruction (maximum five students)
10:30-12:00: Second student group of art instruction (maximum five students)
12:30-1:30 Art displays, Sales, Bidding and Prizes

How to Get Involved
Any person or business interested in sponsoring the event should contact Gwen Bourne at [email protected] Artists who would like to participate should contact [email protected]


Information for Artists

Come Join Us!

Wilbur D. May Arboretum
1595 N Sierra St

Event Photos

May Arboretum Society Logo

The Heart of Your Arboretum

The May Arboretum Society is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) dedicated to the life, growth, and long term sustainability of the Wilbur D. May Arboretum, your arboretum, at Rancho San Rafael Regional Park in beautiful downtown Reno. Events, education, lectures and workshops enrich our members, our city, and our society as a whole.

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