March 1, 2017

KCAI Mourns the passing of Jerry Nerman

We have heavy hearts today as we mourn the loss of treasured member of the KCAI family, Jerry Nerman. He was 97 at the time of his passing. His passion and commitment to KCAI and the arts have left a lasting impression on everyone he met.

“He was an extraordinary person. In your lifetime, you meet people who just stand out as being very special, very different, very unique, and he was one of those people, “said The Nerman Family President Tony Jones.

KCAI has a intimate connection with the Nermans. Jerry’s wife Margaret served on the board of trustees from 1999-2008 and was active in KCAI’s Warwick Society. The connection continues today with daughter-in-law Sue, who currently serves on the board of trustees.

KCAI Board of Trustees Chair Pat McCown said, “Jerry was a gentleman of the community and I am very sad to hear the news of his passing. He not only loved art and artist, but loved to share his art with so many. The Nerman Museum at Johnson County Community College is a legacy of Jerry & Margaret and an asset that will be forever cherished by the greater KC community.  Margaret, Lewis, Sue and his entire family will be in our thoughts and prayers.”

In 2016, the Nermans permanently endowed the president’s position. Tony Jones, now holds the title of The Nerman Family President. Among their many other contributions to KCAI, they are the benefactors who made KCAI’s Café Nerman possible, a central gathering place for faculty, students, staff and visitors that was dedicated in 2004. Jerry and Margaret were awarded honorary doctorate of fine arts degrees during the college’s commencement ceremonies in 2008.

“Jerry was really a giant, a giant twice,” Jones added. “A giant in the transport trucking industry, but in the world of art and design, Jerry and Margaret’s collection is known as a world-class collection of late modern and contemporary art. And that tradition with them has carried forward to Lewis and Sue who have built a contemporary collection quite different, but equally a world-class collection.”

Although it is very difficult to say goodbye, Jerry’s legacy will live on in the countless individuals he inspired and graced with his passion and wit. KCAI and the vibrant Kansas City community are forever indebted to his untiring devotion to creativity and the arts.

September 20, 2017

KCAI Hosts Second Make48 Competition

The David T. Beals III Studios for Art & Technology on the Kansas City Art Institute campus will be full of contestants dreaming up great ideas, crafting mock-ups, and refining prototypes and products during the 48-hour product design competition Make48 on September 28 – 30. Twelve teams from 12 states, including Kansas and Missouri, will be competing. They’ll be given a product category and then have 48 hours to create a prototype product and pitch it to a panel of experts from QVC and other industries. Some of the teams applied to compete and pitched themselves at the National Hardware Show in Las Vegas, where last year’s winners were showcasing their products. One of the teams is composed of a NASA engineer and his family, which shows the range of experience that contestants have.  You never know who is going to come up with winning product…everyone has a big idea! This is the second year KCAI has hosted Make48 and last year’s contest is the focus of a PBS documentary running in 200 markets this fall. You can see it in Kansas City on KCPT or KTWU on Sunday evenings through October 22.  A second season of the documentary will read more…

August 30, 2017

KCAI Crossroads Gallery – Red Dirt Rug by Rena Detrixhe and Dale Eldred: Works on Paper.

KANSAS CITY, MO – August 15, 2017 – KCAI Crossroads Gallery: Center for Contemporary Practice is pleased to announce its fall exhibitions, Red Dirt Rug by Rena Detrixhe and Dale Eldred: Works on Paper. Red Dirt Rug is an ephemeral, site-specific installation invoking the inherent stories within the Oklahoma soil, repetitive processes and found ubiquitous forms. Artist Rena Detrixhe uses the refining and sifting of the soil and the imprinting of pattern as a meditation on the past, a gesture of sensitivity and the desire to understand the beauty, pride and sorrow of the Oklahoma land. Born in Kansas, Detrixhe received her B.F.A. at the University of Kansas City.  Her work has been presented in numerous solo and group exhibitions. Dale Eldred: Works on Paper is a selection of works displaying the monumental landscape projects by acclaimed sculptor and former chair of the KCAI sculpture department. Eldred’s material, environmental ambition included phenomena in clay, steel, wood, water and light in various landscapes and urban-scapes. Eldred joined KCAI in 1959 and was a major influence until his untimely death in 1993