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Plein Air Art Competition 2023

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By Brittany Racca

Richie Vios - 2022 quick draw 1st place winner
Richie Vios

The Shadows-on-the-Teche received tons of applicants from numerous states for the 9th annual Shadows-on-the-Teche Plein Air Painting Competition (March 11-18, 2023) in New Iberia, and is pleased to announce that 25 artists have been selected from the talented pool of applicants for this year’s competition.



juried artist 2023

All 25 artists will be travelling to the Shadows Visitor Center (320 E. Main Street) on March 11 to have their blank canvases marked with the official Shadows Plein Air dated stamp before heading out into town and the surrounding six parishes to paint.

Artists can paint as many paintings as they wish from Saturday, March 11 to Thursday, March 16. The artists’ works will be judged by Tennessee based plein air artist and instructor Dawn Whitelaw.

Morgan Samuel Price at Hilliard for the demo in 2019 from Shadows
Paint Demo at Hilliard Museum

Artists’ work painted throughout the week will be exhibited and available for sale at the Shadows Visitor Center. Competition winners will be announced, and prizes awarded on Friday, March 17 at 6:30 p.m. The ceremony, reception, and fine arts sale are free to attend.

Other festivities planned during competition week can be found below. Additional details about these events can be found on the Shadows’ website.

  • March 11: Quick Draw at 3 p.m. in downtown Lafayette.
  • March 12: Paint Delcambre; Artist Meet & Greet from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Pavilion Bayou Carlin Cove (605 S. Railroad St., Delcambre).
  • March 14: Painting Demo at 1 p.m. at Hilliard Art Museum (710 E. St. Mary Blvd., Lafayette).
  • March 16: Painting Demo at 2 p.m. near the Shadows.
  • March 17: Paint Out from 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. in downtown New Iberia; Awards Ceremony & Fine Art Sale at 6:30 p.m. at Shadows Visitor Center
  • March 18: Coffee with the Judge at 9 a.m. at Shadows Visitor Center
  • Painting demos by competing artists throughout the week at select locations.

Buddha Statue by Harold Letz

About Shadows-on-the-Teche Plein Air:
The Shadows-on-the-Teche Plein Air competition debuted in 2015, introducing the community to painting en plein air. The tradition of “painting outside” is one explored by William Weeks Hall, the last private owner of the Shadows, who advertised for and taught painting classes in the gardens in the 1940s.

In the eight-year history of the competition, over 180 artists from 28 states, Canada, and the Philippines have applied to participate. Almost 100 of these artists have traveled to New Iberia for the opportunity to spend a week painting Acadiana, helping to preserve our unique landscape and historic, urban, and rural viewscapes. Painting sales, the driving force behind the event and a clearer measure of success, increase each year with a grand total of $170,000 over the history of the event, providing support to the artists and the Shadows.

Any funds raised from this event will be used for the continued preservation and maintenance of the Shadows.

For more information, please visit Shadows-on-the-Teche's website.

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