Preview the stunning art events around town in February

Catch and Release by Summer Wheat. // Photo courtesy of Kemper Museum.

While you’ve perhaps had a rather exciting week already, there’s no time to rest just yet! After celebrating Kansas City’s athletic accomplishments, turn your attention to our artistic ones. First Friday is here once more, and with it comes these must-see art exhibits.

Away from Home: American Indian Boarding School Stories
Mid-America Arts Alliance

Painting b Angel DeCora // Photo courtesy of the Mid-America Arts Alliance

This immersive exhibition documents the history of forced assimilation through boarding schools for American Indian children, resulting in generations of trauma. With photographs, artifacts, audio and video, viewers can learn about this important history that is often not taught in schools. 

Opening reception Friday, February 7, 6pm-8pm. 2018 Baltimore Ave.

Shift Over: Staff Exhibition
Imagine That!

This month, Imagine That! exhibits work by their talented staff. IT! is a studio for artists with developmental and intellectual disabilities, and as artists themselves, the staff bring their own skills and passion for art to the table. Featured staff artists include: Craig Auge, Kyndal Wilkinson, Richard Pepper, Ross Schartel, Lara Magyar-Groom, Stephen Proski, Alison Krenzer, and Noah Kellough. 

Opening reception Friday February 7, 6pm-9pm. 2010 McGee St.

Andrew Conroy: Developing
Crossroads Studio

Photo by Andrew Conroy // Photo courtesy of Crossroads Studio

Andrew Conroy’s graceful photographs of rock climbers developing new routes in rural Missouri and Kansas are evocative for climbers and non-climbers alike. Whether or not you’ve ever attempted to scale the face of a cliff, you’ll be able to appreciate the endeavors documented in his work. Conroy’s about to take off on his own cross-country climbing adventures, so you’d best catch his work while he’s still in town. 

Opening reception Friday, February 7, 6pm-8pm. 1919 Wyandotte St., Ste 4.

Summer Wheat: Blood, Sweat, and Tears
Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art

Summer Wheat uses vibrant colors, innovative processes, and historic references to create narratives envisioning women at the center, doing the hard work of living and creating. Wheat is imaginative in “reauthoring everyday life,” according to Kemper Museum’s press release. Expect big, bold pieces that are equal parts playful and powerful.

Opening reception Thursday, February 6, 2020, 6pm-8pm. Artist talk Friday, February 7, 6pm. Exhibition open through May 24, 2020. 4420 Warwick Blvd.

Past Presence
Spencer Museum of Art

Bound Foot by Liu Hung // Photo courtesy of Spencer Museum

How do we understand and engage with the past? This exhibit at Lawrence’s Spencer Museum features artists diving into family histories, memories, and the history from which we’re descended. While our access to history may be limited by inadequate documentation, these artists show the worthiness of endeavoring to try.

Opening February 8, 2020. Exhibition runs through June 21, 2020. 1301 Mississippi St., Lawrence, KS.

Categories: Art