Students take First Friday stage

It’s student night at First Friday in May, or at least it seems that way as galleries — established and impromptu — overflow with works by the Kansas City Art Institute’s graduating seniors.

One of the best places to get an overview is at the school’s annual end-of-semester exhibition and sale, opening Friday at departments across campus and continuing through the weekend.

Opening night includes a digital filmmaking exhibition at 7 p.m. in Epperson Auditorium in Vanderslice Hall. You can see more student films at Outpost Worldwide, 1919 Baltimore Ave., and Berg Event Space, 1525 Grand Blvd.

If shopping is your thing, check out the pop-up boutique, Label | Kansas City, by

Maegan Stracy
Ben Harle

at 1737 Walnut St.


The Late Show Sophie Roessler

has been doing since her “Am I Pretty?” video went viral. Roessler says the drawings and sculptures in her senior exhibit, “Bad Girls Club,” will explore many of the same themes as the video.

“The drawings are a series of graphite and pen images of collaged girls and models,” she said. “The sculptural pieces are inspired by objects found in a teenage girl’s bedroom that deal with the transition from girl to a young woman.”

Pockets of established talent can be found amid the student onslaught, notably at

Sherry Leedy Contemporary Art Tom Huck, Marcus Cain, Kent Michael Smith
Anne Austin Pearce Belger Arts Center Red Star Studios Don Reitz

from Arizona.

Treasures of Mexico “Treasures of Mexico in Kansas City,”

an exhibit of works of Mexican modern art from the Nelson’s collection.

The exhibit includes prints by such giants as

Diego Rivera José Clemente Orozco David Alfaro Siqueiros Manuel Alvarez Bravo Graciela Iturbide

. The show came about after Jacob Prado, consul of Mexico in Kansas City, contacted the museum and asked what the Nelson had in the way of Mexican art.

“It really is a tribute to how the consulate and the people behind it are so carefully planning things and wanting to make an impact and how important art is to them,” said Julian Zugazagoitia, the Nelson’s director/CEO. Previously he worked with the consulate on exhibits of Mexican master Francisco Toledo and popular printmaker Jose Guadalupe Posada.

The Nelson’s collection is fairly sparse when it comes to Mexican modern art, but the consulate was able to find enough pieces to make a viable show exploring its themes and directions.

“We picked the ones we liked the most and the most important,” said Alejandro Siqueiros, the consulate’s coordinator of economic and cultural affairs. “Some had not been shown at the Nelson for years, and for many, this is the first time. We’re delighted.

“We wanted to focus on art from the 1920s to today,” he added. “The national school of painting and sculpture started in 1920 after the revolution, when the government was trying to educate people about art. At the time, many people were illiterate.”

Art was a way to project the ideas and heroes of the revolution, Siqueiros said, as seen in a striking lithograph of revolutionary leader Emiliano Zapata on horseback by muralist David Alfaro Siqueiros

Almost half of the works in the exhibit are by Orozco — whose black-and-white lithographs seethe with a sense of struggle — and Iturbide, a leading light of magic realism.

Three photographs by Bravo include an extraordinary cactus landscape.

Prints by Antonio Pujol and Miguel Covarrubias and photographs by Flor Garduño and Rodrigo Moya round out the exhibit.

“Treasures of Mexico” is a prelude to bigger things to come. (See accompanying story below)

First Friday food trucks

Gallery crawlers can ease their hunger pangs at “The Truck Stop,” a gathering of food trucks on a parking lot at 21st and Wyandotte streets. Participants include El Pueblito, Crave, Deco Catering, Big Easy Ice, Lutfis Fried Fish, Jazzy B’s and KC BBQ. The Truck Stop will be open from 6 to 11 p.m. every First Friday and will feature picnic tables, lighting and music.

In addition, eight more food trucks will be serving at a Kansas City Star-sponsored First Friday event from 5 to 8 p.m. in the newspaper’s parking lot at 18th and McGee streets.

In the following gallery list, student shows are designated with a capital S in parentheses before the show’s title.

Kansas City Art Institute End-of-semester exhibition and sale

May 4-6

Reception: 5-7 p.m. Friday

Hours: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday; noon-5 p.m. Sunday

4415 Warwick Blvd. (816-802-3423)

The Late Show Sophie Roessler: Bad Girls Club May Day, May Day: Carol Zastoupil and Christian Simms

May 4-26

Reception: 6-10 p.m. Friday

Hours: 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday

and by appointment

1600 Cherry St. (816-474-1300)

Consulate of Mexico, Cultural Space Treasures of Mexico in Kansas City: The Nelson-Atkins Museum Collection of Mexican Modern Art

May 4-July 8

Reception: 6-8 p.m. Friday

Hours: 9 a.m.-2 p.m. and 3-5 p.m. Monday-Friday

1617 Baltimore Ave. (816-556-0803, ext. 712)

Belger Arts Center and Red Star Studios at Belger Arts Center Don Reitz

May 4-Sept. 8

Reception: 6-9 p.m. Friday

Hours: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday-Friday (6-9 p.m. First Fridays), noon-4 p.m. Saturday and by appointment

2100 Walnut St. (816-474-3250)

Todd Weiner Gallery Len Steckler: The Visit

May 4-28

Reception: 5-9 p.m. Friday

Hours: 11 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday and by appointment

115 W. 18th St., Suite 101 (816-984-8538)

Studios Inc Exhibition Space Peter Warren: Se Opp for Rotemannen√

May 4-June 22

Reception: 6-9 p.m. Friday; gallery talk noon-1 p.m. Saturday

Hours: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday; noon-4 p.m. Saturday

1708 Campbell (816-994-7134)

Jones Gallery Expressions: Artists With Disabilities

May 4 only

Reception: 5-9 p.m. Friday

1717 Walnut St. (816-627-2220)

Berg Event Space Matthew Wilson: Adrift

May 4

Screening: 5-8 p.m. Friday

1525 Grand Blvd. (enter at the back of the building, between Grand Boulevard and McGee Street). (816-802-3423)

Outpost Worldwide Marshall Fife: Generation of Warriors


Chris Durr: Al-Durr

May 4

Screening: 6-10 p.m. Friday

1919 Baltimore Ave. (816-802-3423)

Leedy-Voulkos Art Center

Front Gallery

Joshua Von Nonn: Immured by Memories

May 4-June 23

Undergrads Underground Gallery

Back Gallery

Lad: LX-12

May 4-June 30


Ashley Lugo: Let Me Bring Light to the Situation

An installation by Ashley Lugo

May 4-25

Reception: 6-9 p.m.

Hours: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursday-Saturday

2012 Baltimore Ave. (816-474-1919)

Subterranean Gallery Amanda Martinez: Smoke and Mirrors

May 4-31

Reception: 7-11 p.m. Friday

Artist talk: 8-9 p.m. May 11

Hours: By appointment

4124 Warwick Blvd. Apt B (309-230-7115)

Mutual Space Roberto Lugo, Alora Wilde, Lora Campbell, Ashley Lugo

May 4-13

Reception: 6-9 p.m. Friday

Hours: By appointment

229 Southwest Blvd. (407-621-1796)

Slap-N-Tickle Gallery Naked Nana: New Work by Carolyn Shepardson

May 4-13

Reception: 6-10 p.m. Friday

Hours: Noon-4 p.m. May 5 and by appointment

504 E. 18th St. (816-716-5940)

Label | Kansas City A Pop Up Boutique by Maegan Stracy and Ben Harle

May 4-13

Reception: 6-10 p.m. Friday

Hours: By appointment

1737 Walnut St. (913-927-0083)

Front Space Gallery Madeline Gallucci: Sweet Steaks

May 4-14

Reception: 6-9 p.m.

Hours: 3-6 p.m. Friday and Sunday

217 W. 18th St. (816-802-3423)

8183 Studio Jordan Haiduk: Kansas City Missouri School District: Under a National Spotlight

May 4 only

Reception: 6-9 p.m.

1735 Oak St. (913-827-6409)

Blue Gallery Nude: An Invitational Exhibition

May 4-June 19

Reception: 6-9 p.m. Friday

Hours: 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday and by appointment

118 Southwest Blvd. (816-527-0823)

Blue Djinn Gallery The Other World: New Work by Dayna Freeman

May 4-26

Reception: 6-9 pm.

Hours: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday

1400 Union Ave. (816-518-4649)

Hilliard Gallery Missiles and Mugs

May 4-26

Reception 6-10 p.m. Friday

Hours: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday

1820 McGee St. (816-561-2956)

City Arts Project Skye Livingston and Katy McRoberts: The Kinds of Stains That Matter


Chelsea Anne Wynn and Bri Chesler: Fracture + Flow

May 4-25

Reception: 6-9 p.m. Friday

Hours: Noon-5 p.m. Thursday-Saturday or by appointment.

2015 Campbell St. (816-820-4105)

Sherry Leedy Contemporary Art Tom Huck: The Hillbilly Kama Sutra Marcus Cain: Wonder Dread Kent Michael Smith: N.I.M.B.Y. Anne Austin Pearce: Undertow

May 4-June 30

Reception: 7-9 p.m. Friday

Hours: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday and by appointment

2004 Baltimore Ave. (816-221-2626)


Two big shows of Mexican modern art are coming to Kansas City in the next year.

The first is “Visions of Mexican Art,” an exhibit of 55 paintings, sculptures and photographs by Diego Rivera, Francisco Toledo, Graciela Iturbide and many others. The works, drawn from Mexico’s Ministry of Finance’s Heritage Archive and its Payment-in-Kind Collection — which allows artists to pay their taxes with art — will be presented in five sections tracing the artistic movements of Mexico from the Mexican School to post-modernism. Organized by the Consulate of Mexico in Kansas City, the exhibit will be shown at Union Station in September, following a summer stop at the Wichita Art Museum, where it opened April 29 and continues through Aug. 26

Next spring, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art will feature the world famous Gelman collection of Mexican art, created by film producer Jacques Gelman and his wife, Natasha. Jewish emigres from Eastern Europe, the couple moved to Mexico in 1941, where they befriended the country’s leading artists and commissioned works from them, including many portraits of Natasha.

Julian Zugazagoitia, the Nelson’s director/CEO, describes the collection as “very strong.”

“All the great artists of Mexican modern art are going to be featured,” he said. “There are many Frida Kahlos, Rivera and more recent works that the collection has added.”