Plein-Air en Plein Air

  • Plein-Air en Plein Air

UCI Jack and Shanaz Langson
Institute and Museum of California Art

Plein-Air en Plein Air

An outdoor art installation


April 12-14, 2024
7 p.m. April 12 to midnight/12 a.m. April 14

Social Sciences Lab | 202 Social Court, Irvine, CA 92612
UCI Social Sciences Lab, outdoor upper terrace

Plein-Air en Plein Air returns California landscape painting to the outdoors and presents a dynamic art experience in an unexpected setting. Images of artworks from the permanent collection of UCI Jack and Shanaz Langson Institute and Museum of California Art (Langson IMCA) will be projected onto the exterior surfaces of buildings in UCI’s School of Social Sciences complex, transforming part of campus into an open-air gallery over the course of two nights. This commissioned installation is designed by Jesse Colin Jackson, associate professor of Electronic Art & Design; associate dean, research and innovation; and executive director of the Beall Center for Art + Technology at UCI Claire Trevor School of the Arts. Plein-Air en Plein Air (which means “outdoors in the outdoors” in French) situates two views in dialogue with one another: the present-day architecture and landscape of UCI’s campus with the now-historic California environs painted by artists in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Langson IMCA strives to make its collections available to broad and diverse publics through multifaceted programming that invites the participation of both campus and community audiences. Plein-Air en Plein Air builds on the curatorial activities of another project commissioned by Langson IMCA, Beyond the Frame: Impressions of California, created by the design studio Imaginary Places. This immersive virtual presentation features images of the same 28 California Impressionist paintings and sets them in a stylized digital landscape with associated artists’ biographies, literary and historical texts, archival images, and environmental sound elements. Together, these two very different projects work to catalyze curiosity and foster conversation and exploration of California Art in the public realm.

California’s characteristic light is a powerful presence in both of these commissioned installations that utilize digital technology. In Beyond the Frame, selected works are organized into virtual galleries that transition from dawn to night—an homage to the transient qualities of light that plein air painters sought to capture. In Plein-Air en Plein Air, the light depicted in the paintings is juxtaposed against the light of the early evening and night sky. Jackson has created an experience that unfolds over time—with the setting of the sun, projected images will gradually come vividly into view. Viewers will be drawn around the exterior spaces of the UCI Social Sciences Hall and Laboratory through a sequence of projections at multiple scales, creating an interplay between the projected paintings, the building’s surfaces, surrounding landscapes, and ambient light, culminating in a visual crescendo overlooking Aldrich Park.

Plein-Air en Plein Air is a creative collaboration at UCI among Langson IMCA, Beall Center for Art + Technology, Claire Trevor School of the Arts, and School of Social Sciences. It is made possible, in part, by support from the Traditional Fine Arts Organization.

You and your guests are cordially invited to a special reception to celebrate the debut of the outdoor art installation

Plein-Air en Plein Air Reception

Friday, April 12, 2024 | 7-9 p.m.


RSVP is recommended but not required. This event is open to all; please feel free to forward this invitation to family and friends. Light refreshments will be served.

Questions: Please contact Jamie Bigman at | 949-824-1429

Please also join us at the installation site for

Plein-Air en Plein Air + Beyond the Frame: Impressions of California

An evening of reading with the design team Imaginary Places

Saturday, April 13, 2024 | 7:30-8:30 p.m.

RSVP to Yomna Shadoufa at | 949-232-3147

RSVP is recommended, but not required. The program is open to all; please feel free to forward this invitaiton or invite a guest.

Questions: Please contact Yomna Shadoufa at | 949-232-3147

For more information, including detailed directions and parking, visit

Image: Renderings of Plein-Air en Plein Air projection mapping installation onto the UCI Social Science Tower (Albert C. Martin & Associates, 1971) featuring projected images of (L) Granville Redmond, California Landscape with Flowers, circa 1931, Oil on canvas, 32 x 80 in., UCI Jack and Shanaz Langson Institute and Museum of California Art, Gift of The Irvine Museum; and (R) Hanson Duvall Puthuff, Mystical Hills, circa 1922, Oil on canvas, 26 x 34 in., UCI Jack and Shanaz Langson Institute and Museum of California Art, Gift of The Irvine Museum. Courtesy of Jesse Colin Jackson, 2024.

   Discounted Advance Pre-Paid Parking Permits
Reserve at least the day before the event.

Free and open to the public


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Friday Apr 12, 2024, 7:00 pm to Sunday Apr 14, 2024, 12:00 am
Sunday Apr 14, 2024, 12:00 am