Last weekend’s Plein Air Affaire event at Santa Cruz’ Museum of Art and History attracted thousands ofsunfog.jpg visitors, and made even more thousands of dollars for the downtown arts venue.

The invited artists included some of the Bay Area’s leading outdoor and impressionistic painters, including the legendary Howard Ikemoto, Peter Loftus, Charles Prentiss, Barbara Lawrence, Mike Bailey, and Frank Galuszka. The artwork displayed was striking, beautiful, and of noticeably higher quality that what many have come to expect from plein air shows.

Galuszka, whose day job is professor of art at UCSC, won the “QuickDraw” prize for his atmospheric egg tempera study, Sun and Fog: View over Monterey Bay, (r.) painted on Sunday morning before the public viewing.

If you missed this summer’s Plein Air Affaire, make plans to visit next year at MAH. Alfresco artwork never looked so good. The Museum of Art & History is located at 705 Front Street, Santa Cruz (next door to the new Lulu’s).