Jean Stern to lecture at Maui Plein Air Painting Invitational

When the Plein Air Painting Invitational returns to Maui, Feb. 15-23, the event will showcase the foremost authority on California Impressionism, Jean Stern, executive director of the Irvine Museum.

On Feb. 18 at 7 p.m. in the Pioneer Inn Courtyard, Stern will delve into a free lecture on “Masterpieces of Plein Air Painting.”

Plein air painting, a French art term for painting directly outside, has been practiced since the invention of the paint tube in the mid-1800s, according to a news release. With the intent of painting the effect of true, natural light as accurately as possible, plein air painters moved out of the studio to be immersed in the same natural light they sought to capture on the canvas.

In this one-hour lecture of approximately 80 slides, Stern will show numerous examples of great outdoor paintings and discuss what makes these works of art successful. In addition, he will show and discuss all eight Best in Show winners from previous Maui Plein Air Painting Invitational events.

Stern got his start in the art world at the age of 10, helping at his father’s gallery. These early impressions helped to shape his lifelong fascination with art and helped to mold his career.

Stern holds a master’s degree in art history, is credited with bringing national renown to Irvine Museum and its collection.

Throughout his career, Stern has judged more than 70 art events and presented more than 250 lectures around the country, but he considers the Maui Plein Air Painting Invitational his favorite and the most desirable plein air painting event in the United States.

“Not only is it staged in the Eden-like beauty of Maui, but it is organized by a dedicated group of people who share their genuine aloha each year,” said Stern. “For the public, it’s an incredible opportunity to watch great artists at work, to purchase original paintings and to have a thoroughly wonderful time in one of the world’s greatest destinations.”

The same evening, an Artists Mini-Paintings Silent Auction will be held between 6 and 7 p.m. prior to the lecture, with final bidding following the lecture.

For more information, visit or call 298-9119.