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La Crosse region art competition concludes Friday with showing, sale



A unique experience Friday for those who love art and — more specifically — art of the La Crosse region.

From 6-9 p.m. at Studio Gallery 1311 on Market Street (map), 32 artists will display their work as part of a two-week competition — the finale of the Sixth Annual Plein Air Between the Bluffs Art Festival. 

It’s not just that original work of the area is up for sale but the special chance to talk to the artists about their pieces from this area.

“There’s definitely a unique experience here compared to going to a big box store,” Mike Martino, who’s on the festival committee, said, “compared to meeting the artist, getting, maybe, a personal connection, finding out what inspired them about it.”

For the past two weeks, those 32 artists have had to come up with an original Plein Air painting within a 15-mile radius of downtown La Crosse.

“This show is basically for everyone,” Martino said. “You don’t have to be an art critic or educated in art to appreciate what the artists are seeing and interpreting in their paintings. You might even see some places that you recognize as your favorite places.

“The idea of an original work of art that was painted just recently so it’s very contemporary view of La Crosse at this time,” Martino said.

There will be drinks and food. The event is free and open to the public. The awards ceremony will be around 7:30 p.m. with categories like, “Best of Show,” “Spirit of La Crosse,” and “Award of Excellence.”

To see some past winners and more info on the festival, go to the Between the Bluffs website here.


Host of WIZM's La Crosse Talk PM | University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point graduate | Hometown: Greenville, Wis | Avid noonball basketball player and sand volleyballer in La Crosse

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