May 4, 2017

Jane Chu Will Deliver KCAI’S 132nd Commencement Address

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (April 24, 2016) — The Kansas City Art Institute celebrates its 132nd Commencement on May 6 and will award the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree to 130 students.

Jane Chu, chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, will deliver the keynote address. Chu will receive an honorary doctorate of fine arts from KCAI during the ceremony. The inaugural Distinguished Friend Award will be presented to Marshall Miller, founder of Art of the Car Concours®. Chu is the 11th chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. With a background in arts administration and philanthropy, Chu is also an accomplished artist and musician. She leads a dedicated and passionate group of people to support and fund the arts and creative activities in communities across the nation.

Chu has a deep connection to Kansas City and its arts community. From 2006 to 2014, Chu served as the president and CEO of the
Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, Missouri, overseeing a $413-million campaign to build the center. She was
a fund executive at the Kauffman Fund for Kansas City from 2004 to 2006, and vice president of external relations for Union Station
Kansas City from 2002 to 2004. Previously, she was vice president of community investment for the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation from 1997 to 2002.

“Jane Chu has been an outstanding leader of the National Endowment for the Arts, widely respected for her thoughtfulness and advocacy of the arts as a daily enrichment to the lives of all Americans, of every age and background. We are tremendously proud to welcome her back to Kansas City and to confer this recognition,” said Tony Jones, The Nerman Family President.

Miller will receive a special recognition award for raising more than $1.1 million for student scholarships through Art of the Car Concours. He was inspired to start the event by his late wife Janet, who served on the KCAI board for more than 20 years, the last five as Chair. The
10th and final Concours was held in June 2016 when 210 vintage, classic and special event vehicles were displayed on the campus green.

“Marshall Miller has been a long-standing supporter of KCAI. So many students have been helped by the scholarship program he founded ten years ago, we all owe him mega-thanks for making a major difference in the lives of KCAI’s young artists,” said Jones.

Commencement will take place at 10 a.m. at Unity Temple on the Country Club Plaza, 707 W. 47th Street, Kansas City, Mo.

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May 24, 2017

Two Major Campus Improvement Projects Launched

On nearly every college campus around the country, summer months are spent cleaning up facilities, taking care of maintenance projects and preparing for the next academic year. KCAI is no different, except that this summer we will also be working on two major campus improvement projects. For years, the Irving Courtyard has been a vacant outdoor space located between two of our growing departments­– Animation and Graphic Design. Thanks to a smart design by the architecture firm GastingerWalker&, we are converting the formerly bleak courtyard into 4,000 square feet of much-needed academic space. This project is an investment in two of our stalwart academic programs and provides modern, flexible learning space that our faculty and students deserve. Construction on the new Mildred Lane Kemper Terrace on the south side of Vanderslice Hall is also underway. The architectural design was informed by historical photographs and brings back the natural integration between the indoor reception rooms and outdoor terrace. The new wheelchair accessible ramp is a significant addition, that ensures everyone will enjoy the beautiful view of our campus green. We anticipate construction for both of these projects will be complete by late August, just in time for returning students to enjoy their “spruced up” campus read more…

May 24, 2017

Don’t Miss KCAI’s Art & Design Auction on June 3

Kansas City Art Institute’s newest studios and The Rowland Commons will be the epicenter for a fabulous evening of awe-inspiring fine art and festive food and drink at 6 p.m. on Saturday, June 3 at the Art & Design Auction. Silent and live auctions will feature more than 200 pieces of original artwork donated from distinguished alumni, faculty and friends of KCAI. Proceeds benefit student scholarships and programs. Honorary Chairs Sue and Lewis Nerman and Event Chairs Abby and Alex Wendel are planning an evening perfect for friends who share a passion for supporting art and design education. Keith Jacobshagen (’65 design) is the Star Artist and one of his signature landscape paintings will be featured in the live auction. There will be a woodblock rubbing by John Buck, a flag by Peregrine Honig, a photograph by Patty Carroll and hundreds more pieces of amazing art. Artwork is valued from $75 to upwards of $25,000. The silent auction hosted by Paddle8, an international art auction site, is now open, allowing collectors a preview and opportunity to bid. The live auctioneer is Kansas City native Quig Bruning, vice president and specialist in the jewelry department at Sotheby’s Auction House. Proceeds from read more…