Bryce Canyon Country’s scenic beauty and pioneer heritage is often reflected in the works of its resident and visiting artists. The rugged, vibrant region offers a visual feast of complex texture and stunning color, from Bryce Canyon’s wind-eroded hoodoos to the vermillion, pink, and gray layered cliffs of Grand Staircase Escalante, to the verdant mountains, colorful canyons and massive rock formations found throughout the high-altitude landscape.
Bryce Canyon National Park is one of the most painted places in Bryce Canyon Country. Sunrise and Sunset Points are known for their early morning and late evening washes of sunlight and shadows, while Inspiration Point and Bryce Point showcase inspiring panoramic views throughout the day, and scenic overlooks all along the rim offer dramatic scenes worth capturing. In winter, artists will find a brilliant contrast between the fiery orange hoodoos and crisp white snow layered beneath clear blue skies. Bryce Canyon’s clear air and high-altitude allow for an unbeatable quality of light, which sweeps over this fantasyland of hoodoos, arches and spires to bring a new perspective to every painting.
Near Bryce Canyon, Red Canyon offers similar red-rock landscape, surrounded by the contrast of the lush green Dixie National Forest. Also nearby, Kodachrome Basin State Park’s rugged landscape showcases brilliant color and texture, so much so that it inspired early photographers to nickname it for Kodak’s then-new film. A few miles down the road Grosvenor Arch poses as a unique artist’s model, a massive, deep yellow sandstone double arch.
Artists can capture the essence of Utah’s scenic backcountry along the Burr Trail, which winds through Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument from Boulder to Bullfrog Marina. The Burr Trail gives access to some of Utah’s most extraordinary backcountry landscape such as the Muley Twist Canyon, The Gulch, and the rugged Waterpocket Fold.
Escalante is Bryce Canyon Country’s premiere art community, home to several art galleries and exhibits featuring Western and Native American-themed artworks. Most of the fine art paintings, sculpture, photography, folk art, pottery, jewelry and crafts have been created by local artisans. Each September, Escalante hosts the annual Escalante Canyons Art Festival/Everett Ruess Days, with a plein air exhibition and competition. Artists throughout Bryce Canyon Country are invited to participate in the Plein Air Paint-Out, setting up their easels to capture the natural beauty found throughout Bryce Canyon Country.
The Escalante Canyons Group for Arts and Humanities is a non-profit arts organization based in Escalante, with the goal of promoting arts and humanities in the local area and supporting arts education in local schools. Other Bryce Canyon Country communities that embrace the arts with galleries and festivals include the historic town of Panguitch and Boulder.
- Read about photography in Bryce Canyon area.