Images of familiar, even mundane environs can carry great intimacy, revealing something true about an individual and affirming life as a deep and complex experience.
In the first of a yearlong series of Library exhibits curated by students at the Kansas City Art Institute – evolving from a class taught by KCAI’s Michael Schonhoff – Casey Lee Holden and Nelson Pereira turn their cameras on their own surroundings. Holden, who came to KCAI from rural Oklahoma, captures the life of her family and its not-so-glamorous reality. Similarly, Pereira photographs the life of his neighborhood in El Salvador as a way to memorialize the everyday exchanges between people and their environments.
The exhibit is curated by Amy Hixson, who is pursuing a degree in painting and art history at KCAI. It is underwritten by Pam and Gary Gradinger and the Richard J. Stern Foundation for the Arts.
Just a four-minute walk from Kansas City’s old First National Bank – now the home of the Central Library – some of the biggest names in American entertainment once made their way to a small photography studio and a man they trusted to cast them in just the right light.
From 1915 to 1930, Orval Hixon photographed hundreds of rising stars of vaudeville, stage, and early film. More than two dozen of them would be immortalized on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Their images, as captured by Hixon, are featured in the Library’s latest exhibit of his work in the gallery named for Hixon on the lower level of the Central Library.
Co-presented by James R. and Joyce A. Finley, Charles David and Linda Hixon, and the Richard J. Stern Foundation for the Arts – Commerce Bank, Trustee.
This exhibition illuminates the two cities’ shared history. Produced by the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum in Canyon, Texas, it features artifacts, art and decorative art objects, clothing and textiles, photographs, and architectural renderings illuminating the connections.
The exhibit’s co-curators, Amy Von Lintel and Michael R. Grauer, are native Kansas Citians who now are historians in the Amarillo area.
Efforts in Kansas City to combat blight and “renew” the city through redevelopment took off after World War II. But visionary ideas came at the expense of established neighborhoods, architectural landmarks, and sense of community.
Featuring before-and-after photographs, maps, and other documents, this new exhibit examines the origin and implementation of urban renewal and its long-term, segregative effects on the city. Officials and developers tried to create a “city of tomorrow.” Their decisions remain a part of our lives today.
The exhibit, researched and curated by Michael Wells of the Library’s Missouri Valley Special Collections, is on display on the fifth floor of the Central Library.