John Meehan Awarded Highest Prize in Plein Air: Island Plus Exhibit

BRIGHT PATH: Artist John Meehan’s ‘Snack Time’ oil painting won a prestigious award from the LBIF.
Artist John Meehan was awarded the Long Beach Island Foundation of the Arts and Sciences’ “Art and Exhibition Committee Award,” the highest honor presented for the LBIF 20202 Plein Air Plus/Island Life Exhibition, currently in the Blai Gallery through November.
“Mr. Meehan was selected not for an individual painting, but for the body of work submitted, truly inspiring and beautiful works of art,” said Daniella Kerner, LBIF’s executive director. The award is presented for both technical and artistic excellence.
More than 50 artists submitted work to the exhibition.
“The colors of the beach still give me a rush!” said Meehan on learning he had received the award. He especially enjoys painting children on the beach. “They are just more active; it is fun to capture their movement,” he said. His “Snack Time,” a large oil painting now at the LBIF, demonstrates the joy of being on the beach on LBI.
Meehan describes his approach as a “shotgun party: see it, do it!” The interaction between children and adults on the beach is especially important to him.
Meehan was born and raised in Philadelphia and graduated from the Tyler School of Art, Temple University’s art school. He began painting on the beach in Cape May before starting graduate school at Pennsylvania’s Academy of Fine Arts. “I’ve been painting on the beach since 1995,” said Meehan, who has shown his work at the LBIF four of the last five years.
Depicting active gestures on the beach, even walking on the beach is fun and exciting to Meehan, noted Kerner. “And that fun shows in his paintings. His work is alive. It shows the wonder of LBI, and that is something that the LBIF can certainly celebrate.”
Besides his painting on display in the Plein Air: Island Life show at LBIF, Meehan’s paintings can be seen at the m.t. burton gallery in Surf City and at the Main Street Gallery in Manasquan.
The LBIF is open 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The public is welcome with a capacity of 25 people at a time. Masks are required, as is social distancing indoors.
For up to date information email, call 609-494-1241 or visit  —P.J.

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