The Artists Association of Nantucket has announced the winners of the 2023 Frank Swift Chase Plein Air Awards, following the 12th annual Plein Air Nantucket outdoor painting festival.
Plein Air Nantucket aims to honor the tradition of en plein air (“in open air”) art on Nantucket, and was open to painters of all skill levels. Beyond allowing artists to explore the island’s natural beauty, the festival provides the opportunity for artists to work among peers.
The festival began on June 13th and concluded with a reception and presentation of awards on June 18th.
First place went to Meghan Weeks for her piece “Waves Break Beyond.” Weeks does most of her painting outdoors, and enjoys the experience of “working from the real thing” when creating art. “The Nantucket community--and particularly the Artists Association--has been such an integral part of my life and career as an artist,” Weeks says. “I’m humbled and grateful to be the recipient of this award, named after such a significant plein air painter and figure in the island's history of art.”
Robert Frazier secured second place with his piece “Shoreline,” and Rose Burdon claimed third place with her work “Path to 40th Pole.”
Frank Swift Chase, the awards' namesake, was an ardent enthusiast of en plein air painting. He taught outdoor classes on the island from 1920 to the early 1950s, leaving a lasting impact on Nantucket’s art scene. A group of his core students also helped found the Artists Association of Nantucket.
All artwork from the festival is being showcased and available for purchase at the Artists Association’s Big Gallery, located upstairs at 12 Straight Wharf. The pieces will remain on the gallery’s “Wet Walls” until Monday, June 26th.