“Western Skies” by Jane Hunt. (photo courtesy Jane Hunt)

A Boulder First

By Jules Marie

Visit The Oil Painters of America 2018 Western Regional Juried Exhibition of Traditional Oils, Sept. 7 through Oct. 6, at The Mary Williams Fine Arts Gallery, 5311 Western Ave., #112, in Boulder. The gallery will also be hosting the Pastel Society of Colorado in December 2018.

Boulder’s Mary Williams Fine Arts Gallery kicks off the fall art season with a coup: an exhibit that showcases an extraordinarily high level of artistic talent. The gallery is hosting The Oil Painters of America 2018 Western Regional Juried Exhibition of Traditional Oils. OPA is considered to be one of the finest organized art groups in America.

“The Return of Flora” by Howard Lyon. (photo Courtesy Howard Lyon)

OPA chose the Mary Williams Gallery due to Williams’ extensive experience hosting numerous large juried art shows and her ability to beautifully display any style of art. To prepare, she strips her gallery down and, as she receives paintings, her innate ability to showcase artistic talent shines.

“This is like inviting the king and queen to Boulder. Our community has never seen anything like this,” says Williams. “This is a first for Boulder and many of the people in our community have never seen these paintings. We’re very fortunate to have this juried, vetted exhibition in our town.”

The OPA is the first national organization to be established strictly for the purpose of supporting traditional representational oil painters—a group largely underserved in the art world, though it represents 4,000 artists in the United States, Canada and Mexico. Representational art describes artwork clearly derived from real object sources that must have strong visual reference to the real world.

“Arroyo” by John Phillips. (photo Courtesy John Phillips)

The opening night reception on Sept. 7, 5-8 p.m., promises an evening of artistry and merriment, as the community joins prestigious artists in celebration. Winners are chosen by Mike Desatnick, a respected and well-known juror of awards, who will be attending the opening reception.

The Mary Williams Fine Arts Gallery will host a prestigious juried Western art show this fall. (photo courtesy Mary Williams Fine Arts)

The Mary Williams Fine Arts Gallery has been a staple in Boulder County’s art world and around the country for 23 years, as Williams has dedicated her career to the sale of fine art and custom framing. The gallery is dominated by contemporary art landscapes, still life, sculpture and a bevy of antique prints and maps. Her custom framing services are highly personal, with shadowboxes or frames designed for family mementos and vintage or antique pieces.

“Framing requires a great design eye and we frame according to museum standards,” says Williams, who offers a unique approach toward providing artwork for assisted living facilities: She reproduces paintings and frames them in an affordable format. She also places reproductions of fine art in healthcare and hospitality settings.