When Hungarian-born artist Gabriella Polony Mountain first came to America in 1951, she had nothing but $120 and her luggage. Fleeing Communist rule, she and her first husband were originally headed for California, but in a stroke of luck for our city, ended up in Kansas City to stay with her brother-in-law and his family.
Polony Mountain quickly made a name for herself, winning awards and fellowships for commissioned pieces. Today she has a diverse and impressive body of work that includes sculptures, mosaics, paintings, repoussé and weavings. After a divorce from her first husband, she met Herman “Rocky” Mountain and remarried.
Today Polony Mountain has extended her legacy through a generous donation to create an art gallery at the Kansas City Public Library. Named for her and her husband, it only seems fitting that the Rocky and Gabrielle Mountain Gallery would open with a collection of her bold and colorful work. Titled A Life in Art, the exhibit will be on display through September 27 at the Central Library location. kclibrary.org