October 25, 2022

Students Take to the Road

KCAI students are immersed in classroom learning and studio work but stepping away from the college to visit museums and workshops offers them unexpected hands-on experiences and historical perspectives. This fall Fiber and Product Design students took to the road to discover the art of quilting and glassblowing. 

International Quilt Museum in Lincoln, Nebraska

In late September, 39 Fiber students, community members, and alums got an exclusive tour of the International Quilt Museum’s collection and a behind-the-scenes look at the maintenance of the quilt inventory. In the collection space, they viewed quilts made from the 1800s to the 2000s and learned about the history of quilting and major quilting artists. In the maintenance area, they observed the special vacuuming and folding techniques used for optimal quilt storage. They also got a sneak peek at temperature-controlled storage rooms, which held thousands of different quilts. One of the main goals of this museum is to maintain quality, integrity, and longevity for all the pieces. 

Leon McAllister (Sophomore, Fiber) was motivated by the trip. “It was inspiring to be able to see so many pieces and to think about who made them, how long it took, and what struggles they overcame. I was amazed by the collection and its diversity- many techniques are displayed and I feel like I can learn something new with every quilt,” he said.  

According to Professor and Chair of Fiber Pauline Verbeek, field trips support Fiber studio work and allow students to experience new places, interact with each other outside the classroom, and build new relationships. 

“Adventures like this are meaningful to everyone who attends. I heard from several students about how much they enjoyed the inclusion of community members and alumni. I’m grateful to the Susan Lordi Marker Fund for making this extraordinary outing possible,” said Pauline.  

Rock Cottage Glassworks

Product Design students received hands-on experience in a workshop at Rock Cottage Glassworks. Each student had a role in prepping the design, blowing the glass, running the molds, and helping with annealing.

A wooden blow mold they created in Beal’s Studios for Art & Design made it possible to circumnavigate technical glass-blowing knowledge. They used 3D modeling and CNC routers to create prototype molds that enabled them to craft blown glass in a way that would otherwise be impossible.  

“The old school practice of glass-blowing takes many years to perfect, but the mold prototypes allowed students to experience it in expedited ways,” said Assistant Professor of Product Design Alison Wood.



October 25, 2022

Make a gift to the KCAI Fund

The next generation of creative professionals on this campus are bold, fearless, and dream big about how they will help shape our future. As creative writers, animators, illustrators, and filmmakers, they want to tell stories that haven’t been told. While product designers, sculptors, and ceramists take concepts and shape them into objects and reality. Every student learns to tackle complex problems and use their creativity to transform the environment around us.  KCAI is exactly where they are meant to be.  Make a gift today to invest in the future of our students and their work as leaders in the art and design community and creative industries.  Donate

October 25, 2022

Alumni reunite

A beautiful fall day on campus was the setting for the first post-pandemic Alumni Reunion and Open House on October 8. More than 100 alumni toured studios, met Nerman Family President Ruki Neuhold-Ravikumar, and connected with new and old friends.  Wade Hampton (’97 Illustration), came from Arkansas to reconnect, reunite, and rediscover KCAI. He was surprised to see an old friend from the MFA Illustration program at the School of Visual Arts in NYC, Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs Allison Puff. “It was heartfelt, returning to the campus that created and carries so many memories with friends, many late nights in the studios, discovering Kansas City, and more,” he said.  Max Pener (’60 Graphic Design), one of the oldest alumni to attend the reunion, enjoyed seeing the new and renovated buildings and the takeaway gift of the Architecture & Innovation 1885-2020 book, which chronicles KCAI’s transformation from a sketch club to a college of art & design. “I appreciate all your effort to keep us involved with the school’s success,” he said.  Alumni Manager Cory Imig was inspired to see so many alums come together to make new memories, and it was worth the wait. “For the first time read more…