Signs of the Times

06/08/2001 - 07/18/2001
Signs of the Times

Signs of the Times, is an exhibition that examined the role of language, text, and signage in recent American art. An important component of this focused exhibition are works from the Kansas City Art Institute’s permanent collection by Jesse Howard, a prolific and well-recognized self-taught artist.

Howard, who lived just outside Fulton, Missouri, created unique hand-painted signs and assemblage sculpture incorporating found objects and drawing from source materials such as the Farmer’s Almanac and the St. James Bible. Howard has been recognized as one of the major American self-taught artists in the twentieth century and his work was included in a major traveling exhibition, American Self-Taught Art from the 20th Century, organized by the Museum of American Folk Art in 1987.

Text, language, and narrative have become increasingly widespread in contemporary art during the past several decades. Artists interested in exploring social and political issues have incorporated text into their work and sometimes use text alone as image. This exhibition explores the role of language in recent contemporary art and the influence that signage and other styles and forms of mass communication have had on artists in recent years.

Signs of the Times was curated by Raechell Smith, Director of the H& R Block Artspace at the Kansas City Art Institute.

Jenny Holzer’s work Protect From What I Want is presented in conjunction with the exhibition, on the H&R Block Artspace’s Project Wall.


The Kansas City Star

A Banner Exhibit for Block Artspace
July 6, 2001
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New Art Examiner

Signs of the Times
July 7, 2001
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The Pitch

Last Word
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Press Release

The H&R Block Artspace at KCAI presents Signs of the Times
May 29, 2001
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