ARTNotes for Feb. 20

February 20, 2012

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Calendar of events

Now–March 31: “On Watch” is showing at the H&R Block Artspace, 16 E. 43rd St. The exhibition features five artists and a pioneering project team of human-rights activists whose works explore the presence of surveillance strategies in contemporary art and culture and the disappearing divide between private and public life. For more information, visit

Now-March 2: Black Artists, Culture and Community presents “Gradient Observation,” an exhibition by BACC members and artists from the KCAI community on display in the Alumni Gallery of Vanderslice Hall.

Feb. 21: KCAI and the American Red Cross will host a blood drive from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Epperson Auditorium. For more information and to sign up to donate, contact Gina Golba at

Feb 22: The Kansas City Art Institute concludes its Black History Month weekly brown bag lecture series with “Sarah Rector: Kansas City’s First Black Millionnaire,” a presentation by Geri Sanders from noon to 1 p.m. in the Vanderslice Reception Rooms. Sanders is an administrative assistant in the president’s office at the KCAI and teaches African-American and American history at Penn Valley Community College.

Feb. 23: KCAI’s “Current Perspectives” lecture series continues with a presentation by Clifford Owens at 7 p.m. in Epperson Auditorium. Owens is a key figure in contemporary performance art. For more information, visit

March 1: Hong Chun Zhang will give a “Current Perspectives” lecture at 7 p.m. in Epperson Auditorium. Zhang's visit to KCAI is co-sponsored by the college's Asian Studies certificate program. For more information, visit

Fiber students tour textile mills

Accompanied by two fiber program faculty members, Kim Eichler-Messmer, special assistant professor, and Erika Hanson, technician/lecturer, five students majoring in fiber traveled to North and South Carolina last month to tour textile mills. Shelby Burchett, Hannah Johnston, Brooke Peterson, Michelle Schmidlkofer and Lynn Gross received scholarships to take part in the three-day industry tour, entitled "Fabric from Concept to Consumer."  The tour was organized by The International Textile Market, a membership organization representing the home furnishings industry. The symposium and tour focused on the process of fabric creation, production and use within the home furnishings industry. The tour allowed students to see areas of design, styling and product development. Participants took part in a portfolio review and visited design houses and weaving, printing and finishing operations. Pauline Verbeek-Cowart, chair of the fiber program at KCAI, said that each year in January five students in fiber who have interest in the textile industry are selected for these scholarships and also participate in a related fabric design competition. Pictured, from left: Shelby Burchett, Hannah Johnston, Brooke Peterson, Michelle Schmidlkofer and Lynn Gross. Photo montage courtesy of Pauline Verbeek-Cowart.

Electromediascope concludes spring program

Electromediascope will present the final screening in its spring program “Alien Contact and Cultural Imagination” from 7 to 9 p.m. Feb. 24 in the Atkins Auditorium at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. Cauleen Smith will present and discuss her new work including “Remote Viewing”and “Other Ways of Seeing,” a series of films reenacting Land Art and recent but buried collective memories. The series is presented by Gwen Widmer and Patrick Clancy, professor and chair of photography and digital filmmaking at KCAI. Screenings are free but reservations are required. For details and to make a reservation, visit

KCAI Wellness Works kick-off

KCAI Wellness Works, a series of events promoting healthy lifestyles, will begin with a salad bar potluck from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Feb. 28 in Epperson Auditorium. Open to all students, faculty and staff, the kick-off will include the announcement of fitness, nutrition and lifestyle events and offerings. For more information and to RSVP to attend, email Amy Gross at and include the potluck item you will bring. 

Pecha Kucha Night KC

Pecha Kucha Night KC #15 will take place March 1 in the Atkins Auditorium at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. and presentations begin at 8:20 p.m. The free event is held in conjunction with the 2012 KC Design Week. May Tveit, who taught at KCAI, will be one of the featured presenters among other artists and local creatives from Design Week. PechaKucha was devised in Tokyo as an event for young designers to meet, network and show their work in public. Drawing its name from the Japanese term for the sound of conversation (“chit chat”), PechaKucha rests on a presentation format that is based on a simple idea: 20 images at 20 seconds per image. To register to attend visit

Faculty updates

Laura Berman, associate professor of printmaking, will show work in “Stand Out Prints,” a juried exhibition at Highpoint Center for Printmaking in Minneapolis, from Feb. 24 to April 14. For more information, visit She is currently displaying work in “Beyond Printmaking III, “a juried exhibition at Landmark Center for the Arts at Texas Tech University in Lubbock running. Work in this exhibition was made in collaboration with Jill Fitterer and received an honorable mention award. For more details, visit Berman also recently had a solo exhibition entitled “On, In, Over, Through” at Gorecki Gallery at the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University in St. Joseph, Minn. Pictured: “Umbra DL12,” Laura Berman, 2011, relief monoprint, 57 inches by 37 inches.

Alumni updates

“The Sneaky Creeps” with Max Crutcher (’10 painting) and Andrew Erdrich (’10 sculpture and art history) will be on air with Mark Manning on the Wednesday Midday Medley on KKFI 90.1 Community Radio at 11 a.m. Feb. 29 to discuss their recent EP, among other music and art related topics.

Student updates

Annie Raab (senior, sculpture and creative writing) has a story in the current issue of Alice Blue Review. You can read Rabb’s story, “The Third Beach,” at According to Jordan Stempleman, who teaches creative writing at KCAI, the author “workshopped this story last semester and went away into a rewrite with her good sense and intelligence and came up with one kind of sun after another.” Alice Blue Review describes itself as a publication that seeks “innovative work, both in poetry and prose, work that quivers nervously for attention, work that teethes endlessly on doorknobs. The best way to understand our editorial preferences is to read the journal. Alice Blue is published quarterly from somewhere between Seattle and Phoenix.”

Calls for artists

The National Golf Club, located in Parkville, Mo., is seeking proposals for a mural to be created in the entrance to the clubhouse locker room. The mural would need to be golf-related. The proposal should include information about the artist and an estimate of artist fee and other expenses. Inquiries should be sent to Stu Stram, president of the National Golf Club at

New American Paintings, a museum-quality, soft-cover art periodical, is now accepting entries for their 2012 Midwestern Competition.All styles and media are welcome but work must be singular and two-dimensional. The competition’s 40 winners will appear in the August/September issue of New American Paintings. The deadline for submissions is Feb. 29. To apply, visit

Travois Holdings is looking for an American Indian artist to paint a modern mural in the firm’s Kansas City office, which is located in the Crossroads Arts District. The space is a renovated warehouse with modern architecture, bright colors and western themes. The artist will be compensated for his/her work and materials purchased will be reimbursed. To be considered, email the following information to Elizabeth Glynn at resume; five samples of work; artist statement; preliminary design; artist fee and estimated material cost; and tribal membership records (if not available, please describe American Indian ancestry). Deadline for applications is Feb. 24.

The city of Dubuque, Iowa, invites applications from qualified artists over the age of 18 for the 2012-13 Art on the River temporary outdoor public art exhibit. Each year, 10 sculptures are chosen to be placed at highly visible locations along the Mississippi RiverWalk at the Port of Dubuque. Selected artists receive $1,500 for loaning the work for a year. A $1,000 cash award for Best of Show is given to one artist. Sculptures must be for sale. Up to three entries per artist are accepted. Applications are due Feb. 27. General information and application forms are available online at or by contacting Jan Stoffel, arts and cultural affairs coordinator, at, 563-690-6064 or 563-589-4110.

Applications for the 17th Annual Student Juried Competition at the Mallin and Jacqueline B. Charno Galleries, 201 Wyandotte St., are being accepted from currently enrolled undergraduate college students in western Missouri and eastern Kansas. Students may enter one to three artworks, and all media are eligible. Entries must be original work,completed in the last two years andnot previously shown in Kansas City Artists Coalition Galleries. Entry submissions are due March 14. Students can apply at For more information, visit

Kansas City Voices, an arts and literary magazine, is seeking submissions of poetry, prose and/or visual art for the magazine’s 10th anniversary edition. There is no fee or cost for submissions and selected contributors will receive a copy of the publication as well as payment for their work. Submissions are due March 15. Guidelines are available at

St. Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church in Mission, Kan., is seeking artists for its second annual juried exhibition, which will take place May 4-28. Artwork must be 2-D and in visual response to St. Michael’s education theme, blessings. Cash awards up to $850 will be available for selected artists. The deadline for submissions is March 30. For additional information, visit

Artists are invited to display work from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. April 28 at the Blue Springs, Mo., Historical District Art and Antique Show. No entry or space fee is required, but a donation of 15 percent of sales is requested, as the event is a fundraiser for Save the Blue Springs Chicago-Alton Railroad Depot. Contributors will be given tax forms for a charitable deduction. The depot is under threat of demolition by the railroad, and a committee has been organized to collect $25,000 by June 1 to move the train station to a park in the center of Blue Springs. Prospective exhibitors are asked to fill out an information sheet and return it by March 30. To receive a copy of the information sheet, send an email request to Pam Albarelli at

Charlotte Street Foundation and the Spencer Museum of Art at the University of Kansas, with funding from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, invite applications from eligible artists living within an 80-mile radius of downtown Kansas City, Mo. A total of $40,000 will be awarded in 2012, with selected projects receiving up to $4,000 each. Rocket Grants are designed to encourage and support innovative, multi-disciplinary, public-oriented projects that happen outside of traditional or established arts venues. Grants are available to individuals or groups of artists, and projects may include any medium or practice with a strong visual component. Funds are awarded in June, and recipients have one calendar year to complete their projects. More information about this opportunity is available at The application deadline is April 1. To apply, visit

Firefox Flicks invites short films that highlight what makes Firefox different. Users, fans, filmmakers and animators are invited to submit high-quality videos that will help mainstream how Internet users learn about the issues that affect their online lives and how Firefox addresses those issues. Submissions will be accepted through April 30. Winners will be selected in four categories: best 30-second spot; best use of new open technology; best animation; and best public service announcement. For details visit,; or!/search/firefox.

All Souls Gallery, located in All Souls Unitarian-Universalist Church, 4501 Walnut St., is seeking artists for monthly shows. Exhibits are limited to 2-D works. To apply, mail or hand-deliver the following by May 30 to the church: contact information; brief biography, including training or exhibition history; 10 images of work as prints or on a CD; preferred month to exhibit or month(s) you could not exhibit; self-addressed, stamped envelope for return of materials and results.

Local KCAI-related exhibitions

Belger Arts Center – “The Mind’s Eye: Landscapes from the Belger Collection” is on view at the Belger Arts Center, 2100 Walnut St. The exhibition, which continues through April 6, features 2-D and 3-D work in painting, photography and ceramic sculpture and pottery. Artists featured in the show include Cary Esser (’78 ceramics), professor and chair of ceramics; Gary Sutton, professor of photography; and Jessica Brandl (’06 ceramics and art history), lecturer in the ceramics department. Additionally, “For some must watch, while some must sleep: So runs the world away,” an exhibition featuring work by a dozen artists who deal with imagery that is “bound to spur discussion of current events,” is continuing through March 2. Artists participating in the show include Adam Beris (’09 painting), Linda Lighton (’89 sculpture) and Ben Radatz (attended, photo/video). Visit for more information.

City Arts Projects – “Construction In Structure,” an exhibition of student work selected by a panel of KCAI alumni, will open with a reception from 6 to 9 p.m. March 2 at City Arts Project, 2015 Campbell St. The exhibition will continue on display through April 21 with an additional reception scheduled from 6 to 9 p.m. April 6. This exhibition is organized by the Career Services department at the Kansas City Art Institute and launches a new program, Access Alumni Events: Connecting Students to Alumni. This program will provide innovative ways for students and alumni to interact through professional practice.

The alumni curator panel includes Matt Bollinger (’03 painting), Erika Hanson (’06 fiber), Justin Gainan (’04 fiber), Amelia Ishmael (’04 photo/new media) (’09 art history) and Jason Lips (’02 ceramics). Exhibiting students include Andrew Ordonez (junior, painting), Ashely Ariel Proski (junior, photography), Ben Harle (senior, ceramics and art history), Bradley Kyle Lewis (senior, painting and art history), Caranne Camerena (senior, painting), Emily Connell (senior, ceramics), Fredrick Vorder-Bruegge (junior, painting), Hank Hafkemeyer (senior, ceramics), Julian Chams (senior, painting), Julian Stropes (sophomore, painting), Katy McRoberts (senior, fiber and CASL), Lauren Sobchak (junior, fiber and CASL), Madeline Gallucci (senior, printmaking), Maret Miller (junior, ceramics), Marianne Laury (senior, sculpture and CASL), Molly Ryan (junior, sculpture) and Zachary Miley (junior, illustration). City Arts Project is open to the public from noon to 5 p.m. Thursday through Saturday or by appointment. Pictured: “Hungarian Bible,” Emily Connell, 2011, slip and burnt ashes of a book, 5.5 inches by 8.5 inches by 5 inches. Photo credit E.G. Schempf.

Kansas City Artists Coalition – New work from Brett Reif’s series “Bedlam Bath & Beyond” will be on display March 2-31 at the Kansas City Artists Coalition, 201 Wyandotte. The exhibition opens with a reception from 6 to 9 p.m. March 2. Reif is an assistant professor in the KCAI foundation program. Pictured: “Bath Fragment; Flume,” Brett Reif, 2012, tile and wallpaper on house board.

Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art – “Wilbur Niewald: The Studio Portrait” is now showing at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art. Primarily known for his plein air landscapes, Kansas City-based painter Wilbur Niewald (B.F.A. ’49 and M.F.A. ’53 painting), professor emeritus of painting, also paints portraits in his studio. This exhibition features 14 portraits by Niewald dating from 1971 to 2011 and will remain on view through June 17. A podcast of KCAI President Jacqueline Chanda, Ph.D., talking with Wilbur Niewald about the exhibition and Niewald’s long association with KCAI is featured on the Kemper’s website. To listen to the podcast, visit

La Esquina – “High Seas, Low Planes” is showing through March 10 at La Esquina, 1000 W. 25th St. The exhibition is a multi-media installation by Ari Fish (’06 ceramics). It is intended to serve as a “temporary temple,” a sacred space for people to congregate. Groups and individuals are invited and encouraged to use the space as they wish, including for activities such as a class, performance, sermon, meditation, spiritual practice, ritual or conversation. The installation will be open to the public from noon to 6 p.m. Friday through Sunday and by appointment. The installation will be comprised of multiple projections of computer generated color light schemes, projected from the four cardinal directions onto large swaths of poly-filament “clouds” and sewn vinyl forms suspended from the ceiling. For more information, visit Learn more about the installation and how to reserve the installation for an event at

The Late Show Gallery – “Devices and Desires” is on display at The Late Show Gallery, 1600 Cherry St. The exhibition features work by William Philyaw (’67 painting), Paula Frankel, Doug Schwietert and Colby K. Smith. “The artworks are perfect little jewels; Dada meets Joseph Cornell with unbelievable affordability,” a spokesperson from the gallery said of Philyaw’s work. The exhibition will be on display through Feb. 25. For more information, including gallery hours, visit

Leedy-Voulkos Art Center – Jim Sajovic, professor in the School of the Foundation Year, is showing large-scale works on paper at the Leedy-Voulkos Art Center, 2012 Baltimore Ave. The exhibition, entitled “Graphic,” will be on view through Feb. 25. In his artist statement for the show, Sajovic said the works are the result of research from his independent artist residency at the Banff Center for Creativity in Alberta, Canada, in the summer of 2010.

Karen McCoy, professor of sculpture, Jessica Kincaid (’92 fiber) and Rita Blitt, who studied with Wilbur Niewald, professor emeritus of painting at KCAI, are among women artists whose work will be featured in “Vanguards and Visionaries.” The exhibition opens with a reception from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. March 1 at the Leedy-Voulkos Art Center. The reception honors past leadership of the Women’s Center at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, whose former directors, staff and advisory board members will attend. According to a UMKC announcement, the exhibition spotlights “local women artists who helped shape the visual arts of Kansas City over the past four decades.” In addition to McCoy, Kincaid and Blitt, artists with work in the exhibition include Philomene Bennett, Jane Booth, Shea Gordon-Festoff, Janet Kuemmerlein and Cheryl Toh. The exhibition is being curated by Sonie Joi Ruffin. To sign up to attend the reception, visit

Paragraph Gallery – “Black Thorns in the White Cube,” curated by Amelia Ishmael (’04 photo/new media and art history), is on view through March 3 at Paragraph Gallery, 23 E. 12th St. It presents a selection of photography, prints, drawings and artist books by eight contemporary artists who are influenced by the heavy, dark and mystic obscurity of Black Metal music. For additional information, visit

Spray Booth Gallery – “XOXO Salon” show and benefit is on view at Spray Booth Gallery, 130 W 18th Wyandotte St. (inside Volker Bicycles). More than 115 artists are represented in the show, including Jonah Criswell (’05 painting), assistant professor in the painting department; Lee Piechocki, administrative receptionist; and Ronald Slowinski, former painting faculty member. A second reception will be held from 6 to 10 p.m. March 2 and the exhibition will run through March 17. For more information, visit

The Writer’s Place – P&M Artworks presents its first annual juried exhibition, “HOME,” on view through March 9 at The Writer’s Place, 3607 Pennsylvania Ave. The exhibition, which is co-juried by Pauline Verbeek-Cowart, professor and chair of fiber, Heather Lustfeldt and Patricia Brown Glenn, showcases new work by emerging artists in Kansas City centered on individual interpretations and reflections of the idea of home. A range of mediums including watercolor, drawing, ceramics, photography, textile, sculpture, video and site-specific installation can be seen. All works are for sale. KCAI artists include Lauren Blumenberg (’10 ceramics and art history); Sara Bogosh (senior, printmaking); Kate Clements (’11 painting); Jonah Criswell (’05 painting); Ashley Lugo (senior, fiber); Roberto Lugo (senior, ceramics); Zac Miley (junior, illustration); Erin Russell (senior, painting and art history); Maegan Stracy (senior, fiber and art history); Yulie Urano (’11 fiber); Ernest Wedoff (’07 painting); Teal Wilson (senior, printmaking); and Jasmine Zelaya (’06 painting).