June 4, 2019

Art & Design Auction Raises More Than $550,000 for Student Scholarships

Over 625 art lovers gathered on the Rowland Commons and in the David T. Beals III Studios for Art & Technology on June 1 for the social event of the summer, the festive Art & Design Auction (ADA), which raised more than $550,000 for student scholarships. The balmy evening, inspired food and drink, amazing art, and dedication of Co-Chairs Ellen and Jamie Copaken and Honorary Chair George Terbovich added up to a perfect evening to support arts education. This year, ADA celebrated the undeniable impact that KCAI has on the creative economy of Kansas City. Our graduates, faculty and friends are artists, architects, designers, chefs, curators, fashion designers and small business owners. They make KC a more vibrant and innovative place to live.

Guests were greeted at the campus gates with a Prosecco cart and they enjoyed creative appetizers and the haunting harp music of Calvin Arsenia while browsing the silent auction of 250 pieces of donated original art. An amazing display of 15 metal wall sculptures, designed by our students and fabricated at A. Zahner, was popular with bidders and a Buy-It-Now Gallery allowed guests to purchase handcrafted art and goods, no bidding required. After a KC-themed dinner and craft cocktails, Kansas City native Quig Bruning, vice president and specialist in the jewelry department at Sotheby’s Auction House, auctioned 10 incredible items including a painting by Angela Dufresne and a hanging metal sculpture by Jason Pollen.

At KCAI, 99% of our students receive scholarships and we welcome brilliant young artists to develop their talent and creativity, regardless of their financial circumstances. Thank you to all our friends and sponsors for your generosity and for making our students’ artistic visions come true.

Backer Bash
On May 15, A&D Auction patrons and sponsors received an exclusive preview of auction artwork and enjoyed artisanal fare and libations at the elegant contemporary home of Chris and Kristen Ridler.

May 20, 2019

KCAI Commemorates Student Residence Hall Topping Out

The Kansas City Art Institute (KCAI) recently celebrated a construction milestone, the topping out of a new 244-bed student residence hall, Wylie Dining Center and Café Nerman. To commemorate the occasion, a fir tree, traditionally known as the ‘construction tree’, was placed on the literal apogee of the building, the highest point. “The final stages of construction on this project are about to begin. We are imminently closer to finishing the buildings where students will have a safe, comfortable home and the community can commune in our common spaces, dine in the new Wylie Dining Center and have a cup of coffee in Café Nerman,” said Tony Jones, Nerman Family President. Construction on the new facilities, located along Warwick Boulevard south of the campus gates, began last summer and students are slated to move in January 2020. Designed by Helix Architecture + Design with the contemporary art student in mind, the residence hall features double-occupancy semi-suites with private baths and cozy study spaces and celebrates the unique individuality of each student while creating a sense of community. Kansas City-based JE Dunn Construction is the general contractor for the project. See renderings of the project here.

May 2, 2019

Join us for an evening of art, food and fun at the Art & Design Auction on June 1

On June 1 the Kansas City Art Institute campus will be the epicenter for a remarkable evening of art, entertainment, creative food and festive drink at the Art & Design Auction. Honorary Chair George Terbovich and Event Chairs Ellen and Jamie Copaken are planning an evening perfect for friends who share a passion for supporting art and design education.  This year’s ADA celebrates Kansas City’s creative economy and the KCAI alumni, faculty and friends that have helped shape it. Browse and bid on more than 250 silent and live auction artworks donated by our faculty, alumni and friends. The artwork will span across mediums and price points to include sculptures, paintings, prints, fibers, ceramics and more.  Live auction items include work by Lester Goldman (1942-2005) (Late Faculty) and Angela Dufresne (’91 Painting) as well as Sculpture Chair Jill Downen (’89 Painting & Faculty) among others. The silent auction, hosted by GiveSmart will open a week before the event, giving you plenty of time to bid on artwork.  The auctioneer for the live auction is Kansas City native Quig Bruning, vice president and specialist in the jewelry department at Sotheby’s Auction House. The silent auction will also include fourteen 3 ft. read more…