July 11, 2019
Veteran Reflection Exhibition Shines a Light on Social Isolation and Loneliness
A powerful new exhibition Veteran Reflection, which gives insight into the social isolation and loneliness experienced by many veterans, debuted on campus this week. It was created by Illustration students and developed through partnerships with the After Action Network, The Battle Within, Humana and Veterans Community Project. Visitors viewed 18″ x 24″ paintings and snapped a QR code with their phone to listen to the personal struggles of 14 veterans from different generations and branches of the military.
For many of the students, this was their first time to have a personal conversation with a veteran. “When I first started this project, I was really nervous because I didn’t know much about what it’s like to be a vet. But Gary was so kind and his story was so inspirational. I felt a huge responsibility to portray him in a way that really showed what he was about,” said Claire Kinnell, who used bright colors and flowers in her representation of Retired Air Force Sgt. Gary Walker.
Talking about social isolation and loneliness was not easy for many of the vets. “In this exhibition, we are talking about something hard — about coming home and not being able to integrate with friends and family. Soldiers are expected to be strong, to not admit they are faltering, so it’s not easy to share feelings of loneliness and isolation. The artist captured my feelings very well and conversations like these are integral to healing,” said Veteran Kirsten Vallinmäki.
Humana is taking Veteran Reflection on the road so people across the country can learn more about the prevalence and impact of social isolation and loneliness within our veteran population. It will be shown at the National VFW Convention on July 18-23 in Orlando. It will be back in Kansas City August 19-30 at the Humana Guidance Center at 215 NE Englewood Rd.
KCAI’s Sponsored Studio, which provides creative solutions to area businesses while giving students real-world professional experience, worked with Humana on the project. From illustrating the underwater-themed mural at the KC Zoo’s Stingray Bay to developing life-like silicone burns for training at Children’s Mercy, KCAI students are having a huge impact on our community. for more info on Sponsored Studio, visit https://kcai.edu/about/partnerships/.
Associate Professor and Chair of Sculpture Jill Downen’s (’89 Painting) Open Spaces artwork has been gifted to the people of Kansas City by the R.C. Kemper Charitable Trust. An Architectural Folly from a Future Place, aconcrete and stone low wall with a fissure, is designed to be a social space —a bench for visitors to sit on and enjoy the serene green space of Swope Park. Jill’s work is one of three Open Spaces artworks donated to the city and two are connected to KCAI. Any Word But Wait by Flavio Cerqueira was sculpted at KCAI Crossroads Gallery last year when he was an artist-in-residence. Flavio’s work is located on the UMKC Volker campus. Join us in congratulating Jill for this amazing accomplishment and read the complete press release from the city here.
Kansas City Art Institute (KCAI) will welcome two notable Visiting Artists this fall to present at the Current Perspectives lecture series. These presentations by a diverse group of artists will inform, engage and celebrate relevant topics and practices in contemporary art and culture. The artists will also directly engage with students through a series of classroom conversations and critiques. Current Perspectives Lectures Each lecture will take place at 7 p.m. in Epperson Auditorium on the KCAI campus at 4415 Warwick. Tickets are not required and all events are free and open to the public. For detailed information visit https://kcai.edu/campus-life/publicprograms/. Lisa Congdon Finding Your Voice: Uncovering the Holy Grail Thursday, October 17 To Illustrator and Author Lisa Congdon, the process of finding your creative voice is akin to uncovering your own superpower. Join Congdon, author of Find Your Artistic Voice: The Essential Guide to Working Your Creative Magic, as she unravels the mysteries and delights of the process of finding your voice, including what it means to have an artistic voice and why having one matters, how to navigate influence, and practices that can accelerate the process of finding and refining your voice. Liz Collins The Best of Both Worlds Thursday, November 21 Embracing abstraction, optics, read more…
- July 1, 2019Mid-Century Architecture Inspires John Ferry’s Art & Life
- June 4, 2019Art & Design Auction Raises More Than $550,000 for Student Scholarships
- May 20, 2019KCAI Commemorates Student Residence Hall Topping Out
- May 2, 2019Join us for an evening of art, food and fun at the Art & Design Auction on June 1
- April 26, 2019KCAI Breaks Ground on Paul and Linda DeBruce Hall
- April 12, 2019KCAI Alumni Win Prestigious Awards