August art preview: Where to go, what to see

Syozen, “Yellow Mountain Pine Peak”

Traditional Chinese ink drawing, breakdancing, and weaving are all in the mix at Kansas City art shows this month. A handful of notable exhibitions close at the end of August, too, so if you’ve been spending all your time at the pool, throw on your sandals and go see these shows before Labor Day arrives.


Before the Pines: Works by Syozen

Vulpes Bastille

A Japanese artist working in the classical northern Chinese tradition makes his debut exhibition in the United States. Using ink made from the soot of Chinese pine trees, Syozen crafts mountainous landscapes, based primarily on Yellow Mountain in eastern China. 

Opening reception: Friday, August 2, 6–9 p.m. Artist Q&A: Friday, August 9, 6–9 p.m. 1737 Locust.

“Breakin’ Art”

Breakin’ Art

City Market

At this interactive and interdisciplinary hip-hop performance that combines breakdancing with painting, dancers will wear all white, painting themselves as they move. (Attendees are also invited to wear white and will have the chance to participate.) Live music and mural painting will round out the evening. This Rocket Grants-funded event features Donald “Scribe” Ross, Ray Brown aka “Reckless Ray,” Phil Shafer aka “Sike Style,” James “SugEasy” Singleton, Windy Farr aka “Bgirl Winderella,” and Joc Max.

Friday, August 2, 6-8:30 p.m. 5th and Walnut.

“Knot Today, Satin”

Knot Today, Satin

Imagine That!

Fiber art runs the gamut from needlework to weavings, from small details to large installations. Imagine That!, a studio for artists with developmental disabilities, presents the wide range of work its artists have made in the realm of fibers.

Opening reception, Friday, August 2, 6-9 p.m. 2010 McGee.

Mike Sinclair, “Las Vegas, Nevada, November,” at the Kemper Teen Exhibit

This/That: Kemper Teen Arts Council Curated Exhibition

Kemper Museum

The Kemper Teen Arts Council, a yearlong youth development program, culminates with this exhibition, which pairs works of art in a way that encourages inquiry and understanding through contrasts and comparisons. 

Exhibition opens Friday, August 16, 2019. Runs through Sunday, February 16, 2020. 4420 Warwick Blvd.

Fatimah Tuggar


Spencer Art Museum (Lawrence)

Who creates knowledge? Where does it come from? By connecting visiting artists with the University of Kansas’ research initiatives, this exhibit explores the role of the academic institution and the nature of knowledge. Artists Assaf Evron, Danielle Roney, Fatimah Tuggar, and Andrew Yang engage with the fields of data visualization, immigration, social histories, and ecologies.

Exhibition opens Saturday, August 24. Runs through January 5, 2020. 1301 Mississippi St., Lawrence, KS.


Same, Pero Differente is up through Friday, August 23 at Open House. Kiki Serna and Rebekah Pech Moguel, two exciting local artists, here examine similarities and differences in Latinx traditions, as well as their cultural experiences as the children of immigrants. Serna and Pech Moguel’s works were both highlights at this spring’s Bricolaje at La Esquina.

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art’s blockbuster exhibition 30 Americans comes to a close on Sunday, August 25. Take advantage of the Nelson’s extended summer hours on Mondays (10 a.m.–5 p.m.) and go see this dazzling collection of works by black artists.

The well-rounded Now/Here is up through Saturday, August 31 at H&R Block Artspace. It features an excellent roster of Kansas City’s emerging artists addressing issues of place and identity.

Categories: Art