Maria Reardon, 2019 Best of Show at Coastal VA Plein Air Festival

Coastal VA Plein Air Announces Fifth Annual Festival Events

All-Volunteer Group Expands Community Through Art for 2020

Fine arts meets grass-roots philanthropy at the Fifth Annual Coastal VA Plein Air Festival, scheduled for April 22-26. The festival's all-volunteer staff will offer expanded events this year, with more free community-oriented opportunities for viewing the artists painting en plein air (in the open air). Proceeds from the artists sale will also benefit a greater range of Norfolk's community.

Over 20 local, regional and nationally recognized artists will gather for the week, capturing the beauty of our area throughout the festival. Coastal VA Plein Air culminates with an Arts Festival that is filled with a series of exciting events, many of which are free and open to the public. Attendees can watch the artists create paintings which will be available for purchase at the end of the weekLast year, the non-profit festival raised $50,000, including matching funds from Norfolk Arts, to complete the group's ambitious goal of raising the monies needed to commission a public sculpture which will be placed in Ocean View Park. The festival is also sponsored by the Ocean View Business Association. For 2020, Norfolk Arts has again committed to contributing $25,000 for public art in Ocean View, once Coastal VA raises the first $25,000. Additional revenue will also fund a children's summer art camp in Norfolk.

“Ocean View is so lucky to have such a committed group of community activists making Ocean View lively and beautiful. It has been fun and rewarding to partner with Coastal VA Plein Air to commission public art to beautify Ocean View Beach Park and tell the story of OV. The plein air painting festival creates a unique opportunity to showcase artists and the beauty of Norfolk.” Says Norfolk Arts Manager, Karen Rudd.
"Ocean View is on fire with so much energy, growth, remarkable beauty, and fun activities. Our organization celebrates these attributes, raises money through its non-profit status and events, then pours the funds back into the community," mentions Monica Van Dyke Johnson, a founding organizer of Coastal VA Plein Air. "We offer amazing artists, extraordinary paintings, fun events, and interesting people. What most inspires us is the desire to create community through art. Every dime raised is returned to the community to enhance and educate. That's something we can all be proud of."

Coastal VA Plein Air kicks off on Wednesday, April 22 with a ticketed Welcome Party, offering patrons the opportunity to meet all of the artists, including award-winning judge Stephen Doherty. The public is invited to view en plein air painting beginning the following morning, April 23 and continuing through free demonstrations around the city as well as a free Quick Draw competition. A ticketed art patron reception and sale is planned for Saturday evening, April 25, and the public is again invited to a free public art show and sale at Bold Mariner Brewery on Sunday, April 26.

Details for all events and artists are available at the festival's website,