Internationally acclaimed artists capture the natural beauty, character and local culture through the plein air tradition.

A Plein Air Event Like No Other

Now in the 15th year of documenting the landscape and culture of the last vestige of authentic "Old Florida,” Forgotten Coast en Plein Air, America's Great Paint-out, is among the world's most prestigious plein air events. Artistic excellence and the production of investment quality art continues to be the trademark of this 10-day festival. As the event continues, organizers are honing what makes the Forgotten Coast event exceptional. “With plein air events popping up all over the country, we realize the importance of focusing on quality and relevance. We have developed a three year program, transcending typical event content to focus on the reason why plein air painting is important, as well as how the process and the paintings contribute to a region’s resilience,” states FCenPA Board President, Joe Taylor.

March of 2020 will focus on the people of the area as it recovers from the impact of Hurricane Michael. While each year will have a programmatic focus for the purpose of examination in the series of lectures, presentations and discussions, the collectors can be assured that the paintings will be a superb mix of subject matter and styles.

The invitational features 20 internationally acclaimed artists, as well as, four "Florida's Finest en Plein Air" artists honored as Plein Air Ambassadors. Expanded exhibits, a Collectors' Forum, distinguished guest speakers, and surprises that will be fresh and new to the plein air community are all in the making! Book your reservations early for the best rates!

As our 2020 Virtual Forgotten Coast en Plein Air continues to unfold, Mark Shasha presents the paintings which he made as a result of his residency here in January. From his home studio, he discusses his residency theme, "Creativity", shares his thoughts about creativity in response to adversity, shows and discusses the work that came out of the residency and plays a song which he wrote and dedicated to the People of the Forgotten Coast. View his work and find the link to his presentation HERE.

Student Art Day

High school students in the area look forward to Student Art Day, where students chosen by their teachers are paired with professional artists for a morning of painting and instruction.  

This experience of one-on-one work with an artist is unforgettable for the youth of our community, and is part of our mission of arts education through this event.  Students are supplied with a canvas, paints, and brushes, and are allowed to choose their subject with their artist for the morning.  This year's Student Art Day is Wednesday, March 25th in Eastpoint at Millender Park/Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve. Paintings are displayed at the wet room the rest of the week. 

Students, please contact your art teacher or principal for details!

Artist Residencies

These three artists will be doing residencies this year and their exhibits will be presented and displayed during the 15th Forgotten Coast en Plein Air event in 2020! Click on their photos for more information about their presentations.

Vicki Norman

Kendall Portis

Mark Shasha


The 2020 Quickdraw will be held on March 21, 2020, at 9:00am, in Mexico Beach. Registration and check in begins at 8:00 am. The event features a wide range of exceptional subject matter sure to challenge and delight all artists. 

All completed work will be displayed after the Quickdraw for judging and sales. Enjoy live music and great food from one of the excellent cafes located within a short distance from the festivities. The judge this year is Sam Knecht. 

The QuickDraw Exhibit Reception will be held that evening at the Center for History, Culture and Art in Apalachicola.

Register Here

Artist Choice at the Maecenas Event

We're switching things up to give Maecenas first chance to see and buy Artist's Choice competition paintings. For our Maecenas (Collectors above the $1000 level) we'll be giving you an opportunity for one-on-one experiences with the artists -- and their art -- while also getting early buying opportunities for the art. And we'll announce the winners of the Artist's Choice painting at this special event. The Maecenas Event will be Friday, March 27, 2020, at the Wetroom this year. Become a Maecenas to get first pick of the art produced by our incredible Forgotten Coast Invited Artists, including the paintings held back all week for the Artist's Choice competition.

Buy a Maecenas Collector's Package Here

Small Paintings at the Gala

Looking for just the right painting at the end of the week?  This year we will be debuting our small paintings at the Saturday night Gala event. 

This year's Gala event will be on Saturday, March 28, 2020.. Since we will be announcing the Artists' Choice winning painting on Friday evening at the Maceanas event, we will debut the Small Paintings on Saturday evening. This will be your first chance to see and buy small paintings at a reasonable price. Artists will be asked to create and display special "small works" for the event.  Canvases capturing the essence of the area in a smaller format--and at excellent price points--give everyone a chance to go home with a beautiful work of art.  Tickets for the Gala are available buy purchasing a Collector's Package at the Friends level.

Buy Gala Tickets Here - purchase at the Friends level or above.

Painting Stations

If you are not a plein air painter, how would you like to be coached by a professional!? Would you like to create your own plein air painting?

Forgotten Coast en Plein Air has committed to everyone having a chance to join in the excitement of plein air painting. Even if you have never put paint to canvas, here is the opportunity.  Plein Air Painting Stations will be set up in each community throughout the 10 day event. A schedule will be posted soon outlining locations and times to sign up for a session to paint your own painting. In addition, there will be "community canvases" where you can walk up and paint on your own!  You will have a chance to be "coached" by one of six plein air artists representing Florida's incredible plein air talent.

Register Here

Florida's Finest en Plein Air

Now in the fifth year, this special exhibition and Ambassadors program highlights the modern plein air movement in the State of Florida 

Began as a special feature of our 10th Anniversary Celebration, Florida’s Finest en Plein Air is an exhibition of paintings produced in Florida by Florida plein air artists. This exhibition was first juried by Morgan Samuel Price. This year, six new Ambassadors will join the exhibition and the collection will be shown at The Center for History, Culture and Art in Apalachicola.

The exhibit features a special presentation of work by Morgan Samuel Price as the original Juror; work by invited artists from Florida, past Ambassadors and featured work by the 2020 Florida's Finest Plein Air Ambassadors. The exhibit showcases the plein air paintings from Florida's great wealth of painting talent. 

How Art (and Artists) Have Changed Our World

Hurricane Michael hit the Forgotten Coast with Category 4 strength and 155 mile-an-hour winds on October 10, 2018. In a few hours, the 100-mile stretch along the Gulf of Mexico was impacted in ways that will be felt for years. Amid the crews of disaster responders, Plein Air artists jumped in from afar, creating a week-long art auction (called Operation Fund Storm) that raised $111,000 for the communities affected. Artists from across the country donated 265 paintings, many of which depicted the landscape of the Forgotten Coast. The funds from the art sales are being used to support formation and training of a regional Disaster Corp group of local young adults, themselves impacted by the storm.  The young people are developing their skills while working in hurricane recovery tasks in the area. We are rebuilding! Our natural coastal areas are as beautiful as ever! And every day we are humbled by the generosity and talents of plein air artists and their collectors.

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