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  Current Exhibitions

Dressed Up

October 11, 2013–April 27, 2014

Kemper Museum

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This exhibition presents works of art—photography, collage, and paintings—that exist at the intersection of nature, culture, artifice, and perception. The theater of the self, influenced by art history, pop culture, and fashion, takes center stage in this international exhibition. Every picture in this visually lush exhibition tells an aspect of the story of our times. Photographs of constructed realities in the Flora series were created in collaboration between Neeta Madahar and the subjects of the portraits. African American Hip Hop culture meets Victorian excess in a series of watercolor-and-photo collages by Nigerian-born Marcia Kure. Hope Gangloff, who lives and works in up-state New York, creates a very contemporary take on the portrait tradition with a record of her artist community comrades and paints portraits of her friends that capture a very 21st-century aesthetic of clothing and mood combined with a 19th-century love of line and gesture. Houston-based artist Trenton Doyle Hancock’s collaged paintings and etchings are imbued with fictional narratives that explore ideas of reclaiming identity through the development of adapted personalities, which are illuminated by his use of repeated symbols and masking motifs.

Neeta Madahar, Zeynep with Lily, 2010; edition 3/9, chromogenic hand print on paper, 40 x 30 inches; Courtesy of the artist and Howard Yeserski Gallery


The Center is a Moving Target

April 4–August 1, 2014

Kemper at the Crossroads

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The Center is a Moving Target highlights artists whose evolving practice and works speak to the impact and meaningful shifts in the term “regionalism” in contemporary art. Featuring recent two- and three-dimensional and time-based media works by 12 artists living and working within a 20-mile radius of Kansas City’s Crossroads Arts District (a curator-designated region), the exhibition and its programming will discuss “regionalism.” The goals are to enliven the dialog on what creates a community, region, or arena for artistic invention and action, and to explore the notion that the center of the contemporary art world is a moving target.

Artists: Ricky Allman, Corey Antis, Miki Baird, Robert Josiah Bingaman, Cary Esser, Rashawn Griffin, Diana Heise, Linda Lighton and Mark Southerland, Garry Noland, Ahram Park, Paul Anthony Smith

Exhibition programs are supported by the Karen and Jack Holland Visiting Artist Program.

Ricky Allman, All of Us Redux, 2013; acrylic on canvas, 60 x 84 inches; Courtesy of the artist


Barry Anderson: Pigeon

April 18–November 2, 2014

Barbara and Paul Uhlmann Gallery

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Reflecting on the poetics of place, Barry Anderson’s single-channel video installation Pigeon (2001) (7:37 minute loop) engages the viewer in both the activity and stillness of a site. In this digital film of a pigeon moving under an arch of flowing water in the Piazza del Campo in Siena, Italy, Anderson focuses on the quiet mystery and humor of the everyday. Accompanied by the existing sounds present in the piazza the video grounds us in a sense of real-time for a brief and unexpected exchange.

Barry Anderson, Pigeon, 2001, single-channel video with stereo, edition 2 of 5, dimensions variable, 7:37 min. loop. Gift of the artist, 2011.2.


This American Life

February 18–September 19, 2014

Kemper East

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This exhibition presents works from the Kemper Museum's permanent collection that explore the social, geographic, and historical subjects connected to aspects of life in America. Depictions of the familiar, images of people, places, and things, take on larger meaning when seen in the context of the exhibition. Among the artists featured are Christopher Brown, Rackstraw Downes, Janet Fish, Elizabeth Layton, and Jamie Wyeth.

Janet Fish, Fourth of July, 1986; oil on canvas, 46 x 62 inches; Collection of Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Bebe and Crosby Kemper Collection, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. R. Crosby Kemper Jr., 1998.3


Butterfly Effect

December 20, 2013–June 15, 2014

Kemper Museum

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The butterfly effect is a phenomenon explored in chaos theory. It proposes that systems can be impacted by initial conditions of small change that may lead to an unpredictable outcome. The idea suggests that a very subtle action, in this case the flapping of the wings of a butterfly, has the potential to significantly alter a set of circumstances leading to the occurrence of a massive event. This escalated circumstance resonates with repeated patterns that accumulate, often changing in space and evolving over time. Butterfly Effect is an exploration of this idea through a look at works from the Kemper Museum’s permanent collection. The exhibition includes works by Hugh Merrill, Polly Apfelbaum, John Kalymnios, and Christian Boltanski among others.

Hugh Merrill, Black Moon's Tide, 2008; mixed media on paper, 32 x 46 inches; Collection of Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Gift of Maria Racela Smith and Jeremy Smith, 2009.5


Area Code

November 8, 2013–May 18, 2014

Kemper Museum

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Area Code presents works from the Kemper Museum’s permanent collection in which the use of geometry is an underlying principle. The artists in Area Code explore ways in which abstraction continues to expand concepts of the narrative, perspectives on real and imagined places, correlations between natural and man-made systems, and leitmotifs underscored by the fundamentals of geometry. The exhibition includes works by Barry Anderson, Suzanne Caporael, Susan Hefuna, Ana Maria Hernando, Roberto Juarez, Robert Mangold, Kenneth Noland, James Rosenquist, Robert Stackhouse, and Robert Walden.

James Rosenquist, Area Code, 1969; Color lithographs, 32 ¾ x 30 ½ x 1 ½ inches each; Bebe and Crosby Kemper Collection;
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. R. Crosby Kemper Jr., 1995.65