You are here

New Exhibit at Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Features 100 Paintings of NPS Areas

Painting of Grand Canyon

"Canyon Light," Grand Canyon National Park, by artist Richard Biddinger is one of the works featured in the show. NPS image.

In you live in the St. Louis area or will be visiting Jefferson National Expansion Memorial (home of the "Gateway Arch") between October 1 and December 1, here's a chance to enjoy a free exhibit of 100 paintings of 45 different NPS areas. The works were winners in the annual PaintAmerica competition.

The temporary exhibit opens on Thursday, October 1 in the Old Courthouse, 11 North Fourth Street in St. Louis, Missouri. The Old Courthouse is part of Jefferson National Expansion Memorial, and has been a St. Louis landmark for over 150 years. According to information from the park,

In the paint the Parks competition, talented artists have captured the qualities for which Americans treasure and preserve these sites. From the well-known Grand Canyon to the lesser-known New Jersey Coastal Heritage Trail, visitors will see familiar vistas through fresh eyes and discover new locales that may end up on their vacation itineraries. Meanwhile, the artists demonstrate masterful techniques in oil, acrylic, watercolor, pastel, and colored pencil.

In a nationwide competition, these artworks were judged best at capturing the “essence” of the landscape, wildlife, and history of the National Park System. Forty-five different parks, trails, and memorials are represented. Family activities and ranger tours will explore park histories and artistic expression.

PaintAmerica organizes this annual competition and exhibition in support of its mission to bring the arts to all people for the betterment of society. The free exhibit is open daily from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The paintings are available for purchase through the PaintAmerica association. Some proceeds from the tour are given to the National Parks Foundation. A percentage from paintings sold in St. Louis goes to the Jefferson National Parks Association.

PaintAmerica is a 501(c)(3) non-profit association, "devoted to providing opportunities for artists all across America." PaintAmerica’s “Paint the Parks” is an open international artists’ juried competition. Proceeds help fund the PaintAmerica mission of supporting the visual arts and artists across the country. A portion of proceeds from “Paint the Parks” will be contributed annually to the National Parks Foundation and the PaintAmerica Scholarship Fund.

Winners of the organization's 2010 Paint the Parks100 are scheduled to be on display at the Kolb Studio Gallery at Grand Canyon, Arizona between April 15, 2011, and June 15, 2011.

The exhibit is being held in the Old Courthouse,

the site of the first two trials of the pivotal Dred Scott case in 1847 and 1850. It was also where Virginia Minor's case for a woman's right to vote came to trial in the 1870s. You may tour this historic structure, and visit the restored courtrooms to learn more about our 19th century judicial system.

The website for Jefferson National Expansion Memorial includes driving directions to the park and information about parking and public transportation.


Jim, many thanks for bringing forth this information regarding the Jefferson art exhibit in Saint Louis. Nothing can be more inspiring to view a well composed painting that touches the very grandeur of the national parks and crystalizes are desire to visit and see. Digital photography cannot always display the depth and the feeling of the photographer but a well painted canvas a competent artist. With the proper use of art media and with good technique, the artist can bring out the majestic wonders of the national parks. There's something powerful and more meaningful when an artist can sit for hours, and days waiting to capture the light, and the range of color that varies through out the day...and season. It's called poetry with a brush.

I saw this exhibit at the Grand Canyon -- it is incredible. Thanks to the Old Courthouse and the National Park Service for making this possible in St. Louis. The artists in this exhibition are clearly the best around. Well worth the trip to see it!

Add comment


This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide