Visual Arts

The Iraqi Refugee Portrait Project

Jul 3, 2012

On this Tuesday's Central Standard, an Iraqi refugee explores the time he spent in a refugee camp through photographs. In his images, widows show him the one item they kept when they fled their homes.

National Geographic staff photographer Annie Griffiths says she's "learned that even without a shared language, it’s easy to let people know that their children are beautiful, their homes are lovely…and that their stories are worth sharing with the world.”

Father & Son Photographs

Jun 12, 2012

It was playwright Arthur Miller who said that a man's masterpiece is his son. How can you capture that relationship in a photograph?

Kansas City Star

If you happen to stand in one spot in a Kansas town or city, did you ever wonder what things looked like 100+ years ago? 

Courtesy of the artist

Johnson County launched its one percent for art program in 2007. This means that one percent of the budget of a new major capital project is set aside for public art.

A printmaker returns to his Missouri roots, and the Kansas House passes a redisctricting plan for the Senate.  It’s a daily digest of headlines from KCUR.

Tom Huck

It's been more than a decade since St. Louis-based printmaker Tom Huck's hometown of Potosi, Missouri (population: 3,000) featured prominently in his work.

Local Fountain Sculptor Gives Background To Popular Works

May 2, 2012
Kauffman Gardens Fountain
Photo: flickr/ChrisM70

Click below to hear local sculptor Tom Corbin sharing stories about a few of his big works around town.

Kemper ArtCast: Observational Expertise

Apr 30, 2012
Bebe and Crosby Kemper Collection

In this interview, Kemper Museum Educator of School and Family Programs, Lauren Park, talks to exhibition artist Wilbur Niewald about the term “plein air” painting.

Mattias Klum

Mattias Klum makes a living by shooting photographs of some of the world's most endangered species and places.

A photographer for National Geographic, Klum might be considered an endangered species himself, given his recent work shooting closes ups of the venomous Chinese cobra, which can shoot its venom up to nearly 7 feet. Even a drop of that venom can blind you.

But there he sat....shooting away....nonetheless.

If you’ve visited the Missouri State Capitol building you probably saw his work. If you’ve spent time in midtown, you might have driven by his house.

Celebrity Photographer Greg Gorman

Mar 15, 2012
Photo: Greg Gorman

If you don’t recognize his name, you’ll likely know his work. Photographer Greg Gorman has documented some of the world’s most familiar faces.

Clifford Owens: How Performance Provokes, Engages

Feb 23, 2012

On this Thursday's Central Standard, we speak to artist Clifford Owens, whose piece Anthology is currently showing at MoMA PS1 in New York.

Image courtesy of the artist and Susan Inglett Gallery

Kemper Museum Chief Curator Barbara O’Brien interviews Brooklyn-based artist Eric Fertman, who made a conscious decision to stay in New York after graduating with a BFA from Cooper Union in 1997.

National Geographic staff photographer Annie Griffiths says she's "learned that even without a shared language, it’s easy to let people know that their children are beautiful, their homes are lovely…and that their stories are worth sharing with the world.”

courtesy of the artist

Kansas City artist Wilbur Niewald has been associated with the Kansas City Art Institute for 76 years, and claims it has changed, “but not as much as you would imagine…it's always been like an oasis.”  In this Kemper ARTcast, Dr. Jacqueline Chanda, recently inducted President of the Kansas City Art Institute, asks Niewald about the changes in his painting over his career in conjunction with the Wilbur Niewald: The Studio Portrait, now on view at Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art.

A daily digest of headlines from KCUR.

  • Missouri House  OKs Spending Limits
  • Charity Head Pleads Guilty To Fraud
  • Painting What He Sees

Artist Wilbur Niewald, professor emeritus of painting at the Kansas City Art Institute, draws and paints from direct observation – what he sees around him.

photo: Laura Spencer/KCUR

Sculptor Petah Coyne's Untitled #1336 (Scalapino Nu Shu) is a massive installation, featuring a 14-foot-high apple tree covered in black sand, and taxidermied pheasants and peacocks. The subtitle of the work refers to Coyne's friendship with the late poet Leslie Scalapino, and n? shu - a centuries old Chinese writing technique used by women, stories told in secret writing.

photos: Laura Spencer/KCUR

"Rodin: Sculptures from the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Foundation" displays 40 bronze sculptures in the Bloch Lobby of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.

Kansas City, Mo. – The exhibition, only the second to be installed in the lobby, is divided into three sections: figures related to the "Gates of Hell," a massive bronze portal; commissioned historical and cultural heroes; and a series of hands.

Courtesy of the artist

Artist June Ahrens draws on a wide range of materials, from rusty razor blades and air conditioner filters to insulation foam and pillows.

Kansas City, Mo. – The latest series by the artist uses broken acrylic mirrors, broken jars, and bottles to create works inspired by the events of 9/11.

KCUR's Laura Spencer caught up with Ahrens recently during the installation of two of her pieces, Hiding in Plain Site and Still Standing, at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art.

CNN.com commissioned artists from around the world "to create or choose work to illustrate the ripple effect of 9/11." Here, Kansas City's Peregrine Honig describes her work called "Twins," and recalls where she was on September 11, 2001.

Kansas City, Mo. –

Peregrine Honig's artist statement for CNN.com's 9/11 Ripple project:

photo: Laura Spencer/KCUR

Acquiring new art for a museum's permanent collection can be a complex, and sometimes political process. When the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art found out they'd be able to keep three of New York-based artist Roxy Paine's Scumak sculptures, they decided to open up the decision to the public.

Kansas City, Mo. – Acquiring new art for a museum's permanent collection can be a complex, and sometimes political process.

photo: courtesy of Zahner

Leo Villareal's Microcosm (2007) is a permanent site-specific light sculpture at the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art in Overland Park, Kan.

Kansas City, Mo. – In 2006, the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art commissioned a major site-specific installation from artist Leo Villareal for the cantilever of the museum's entrance. Executive director Bruce Hartman calls Villareal's Microcosm "one of the museum's most iconic works."

photo: Laura Spencer/KCUR

The elaborately crafted Roxy Paine sculpture called Ferment resembles a 56-foot tall stainless steel tree. It's a new addition to the sculpture park at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. KCUR's Laura Spencer takes a look at the New York-based artist's connections to Kansas City and the two-week installation process.

Graffitti Serves the Law

Jan 4, 2011
photo by dan verbeck

Kansas City, Mo. – The homeless are less visible around downtown Kansas City than in years' past. In his second part of a series , KCUR's Dan Verbeck went to the heart of the district and filed this account:

Kansas City, MO – For the past several years, Dwayne's Photo in Parsons, Kansas, has been the last place on the planet that officially develops Kodak's Kodachrome film. But with the end of 2010, the lab stopped processing Kodachrome.

So in the past few months, the lab has been receiving thousands of film rolls a day from all over the world. KC Currents' Alex Smith hit the road for Parsons to find out more.

photos: Laura Spencer/KCUR

Stainless steel is an elegant medium. It's an alloy of metals, including chromium and nickel. A local master of the material says he's hanging up his hat, at least for now.

Kansas City, MO – Stainless steel is an elegant medium. It's an alloy of metals, including chromium and nickel. A local master of the material says he's hanging up his hat, at least for now.

Gloria Baker Feinstein originally traveled to East Africa in 2006 to photograph children whose parents had died of AIDS. During the three week project, she says she encountered children who radiated hope, even in desperate circumstances. So when she returned home, Feinstein began a different kind of project.

Laura Spencer / KCUR 89.3

Two new public art projects in downtown Kansas City sound a bit like the names of emo rock bands: Pedestrian Strands and Celestial Flyways. But they're both a sign of the changing times in the downtown loop and a shifting approach to public space.

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