June 1, 2020

KCAI: We Stand Against Racism

A Message from the Nerman Family President:

KCAI utterly condemns the ongoing racist treatment of Black Americans that has resulted in the recent deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, and in the continued murders, harassment, and prejudice that our Black community members face on a daily basis. We stand in strong solidarity with those protesting police brutality, and we support those who demand to be heard. We join them in speaking out against systemic racism, grounded in a long history of inequity and violence, which continues to devalue the lives of Black people in this country.

Colleges of art and design are often places of refuge, filled with like-minded humanitarians, dedicated to inclusivity and equality. We commit to change and action. We re-dedicate ourselves to better supporting our students, faculty, and staff of colour. We will lift up the voices of those in our community who are marginalized and oppressed. We will continue to speak out against injustice and to affirm that Black Lives Matter. We will work harder to make KCAI a safe and equitable place for people of colour to learn, to express, find a home, and create. I am horrified by the spectacle of our nation being deliberately divided. It must be in our nature to heal, and as artists and social practitioners, to direct our energies to improving the quality of life for all. We start here – in this terrible moment for America – we must together redefine our mission, re-state our dedication to individuals and communities.

George Floyd must not have died in vain. It is our personal and institutional responsibility to take back the values of our nation.

Tony Jones CBE
The Nerman Family President

July 9, 2020

Lead Bank’s Lead Emerging Artist Prize Celebrates Diverse Talents 

Artwork Corn, OK by Stella Bonafazi (Junior, Photography) Lead Bank recently awarded the 2020-2021 Lead Emerging Artist Prize (LEAP) to the following four KCAI art students: Ryan Haney (Senior, Sculpture) of Miami, FL; Stella Bonafazi (Junior, Photography) of Tulsa, OK; London Williams (Senior, Painting) of Milwaukee, WI; and Hung Le (Junior, Fiber) of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Longtime supporters of KCAI and its Sponsored Studio Program, Lead Bank created the Lead Bank Emerging Artist Prize in 2018 as a benefit to the community. Recognizing the diverse talents each student holds, from imaginative sculpting and captivating photography to the exploration of mainstream topics through fabric, each student has shown his or her expertise through hands-on expression. Their work can be viewed on the following webpage: https://lead.bank/lead-emerging-artist-prize  Each year, Lead Bank features the recipient’s artwork on the Bank’s Community Art Panels located in their Crossroads branch parking lot. These panels were constructed specifically for the community to enjoy the artists’ works throughout the year. The four Emerging Artists’ artwork will be featured as a 2D mural on the Community Art Wall located at the Crossroads bank location (1801 Main Street) with the original artwork displayed inside the bank lobby.  “We are thrilled to welcome read more…

May 28, 2020

Fond Farewell to Two Inspirational Faculty Members

Two beloved faculty members, with over 76 years of combined service to KCAI, retired at the end of the 2020 academic year. They’ve inspired generations of students with their relentless passion for teaching and leave an immeasurable impact on the college. Thank you Steve Whitacre and Karen McCoy for your years of service, dedication to our students, and active engagement on campus. Congratulations on your retirement. You will be missed.  Fellow faculty share tributes to their accomplishments. Steve Whitacre Professor and Sosland Family Chair of Foundation Joined KCAI in 1969 For over half a century, Steve Whitacre’s remarkable and distinguished career and long-standing leadership of the Foundation program at KCAI has earned national and international recognition.  Before coming to KCAI in 1969, Steve studied at the Columbus College of Art and Design and earned both a BFA and MFA from Ohio University.  According to the artist and educator, his studio practice continues to explore the estuary between art and architecture in relationship to sculpture and personal, poetic language.  Steve’s works are held in many private collections and have been widely exhibited in this country, England, Scotland, and Italy. He has taught and led projects at the Cranbrook Academy of Art in read more…