Spring 2014

The Kansas City Art Institute is pleased to announce the spring 2014 lineup of artists, designers and scholars who will speak as part of the college's "Current Perspectives" series.

Unless otherwise noted, all lectures are free and open to the public and will be held at 7 p.m. Thursdays in Epperson Auditorium, Vanderslice Hall on the KCAI campus, 4415 Warwick Blvd., Kansas City, Mo.

Spring 2014

Feb. 20: Del Harrow

Del Harrow is a sculptor and educator based in Fort Collins, Colo. His work in ceramics explores the intersection of digital design and manual, skill-based fabrication processes. He highlights culture's generative systems of meaning by addressing scale, history and modularity through the installation of his work. Harrow is an assistant professor of art at Colorado State University and taught previously at Penn State University and the Kansas City Art Institute.

Pictured: Image from Harrow's solo show titled, "Breathe," at Haw Contemporary, Jan. 10 - Feb. 22, 2014

Feb. 27: Susanna Coffey

Susanna Coffey is an artist best known for her painted self-portraits. Her work also encompasses themes of war, still life and nighttime, plein air landscapes. Coffey graduated with a B.F.A degree from the University of Connecticut in 1977 and received an M.F.A degree from the Yale School of Art in 1982. She is a fellowship recipient from the National Endowment for the Arts and the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. Coffey's work has been exhibited in solo and group shows throughout the United States and Europe. She is the F.H. Sellers Professor in Painting at The School of The Art Institute in Chicago, where she has taught since 1982.

Pictured: "Water Years 1," Susanna Coffey, 2005, oil on linen, 12 inches by 15 inches 

March 13: Marjorie Welish

Marjorie Welish is a poet, artist and art critic. Welish's "The Annotated 'Here' and Selected Poems" (2000) was a finalist for the Lenore Marshall Prize from the Academy of American Poets. Her writing has appeared in Art Monthly, BOMB magazine and a number of other art publications. A collection of her art criticism came out in 1999 entitled, "Signifying Art: Essays on Art after 1960."

Welish's artwork has been showcased throughout the United States. She has received grants and fellowships from the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation, the Djerassi Foundation, the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, Fifth Floor Foundation, the Howard Foundation, the International Studio Program, the MacDowell Colony Fellowship, Pollock-Krasner Foundation and the Trust for Mutual Understanding. 

In April 2002, Slought Foundation and the University of Pennsylvania produced a conference on her art and writing, the proceedings of which became "Of the Diagram: The work of Marjorie Welish" (Slought Books, 2003). 

Full bio

Pictured: A studio installation of Welish's artwork

March 27: Lawrence Weschler

Nonfiction writer Lawrence Weschler graudated from Cowell College of the University of California at Santa Cruz in 1974. Weschler was a staff writer at The New Yorker magazine for more than 20 years (1981-2002). He is a two-time winner of the George Polk Award for Cultural Reporting in 1988 and Magazine Reporting in 1992 and was a recipient of the Lannan Literary Award in 1998. From 2001-2013, Weschler was the director of the New York Institute for the Humanities at New York University. With his work "Mr. Wilson's Cabinet of Wonder," Weschler was a finalist in the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction.

Pictured: Lawrence Weschler






April 3: Dan Ibarra

Dan Ibarra is co-founder of Aesthetic Apparatus, a  commercial art and printmaking studio based in Minneapolis. Since its start in 1999, the studio has inhabited the unkempt and untamed region between design, entrepreneurship and art.

Pictured: Aesthetic Apparatus studio space

April 10: Pepón Osorio

Sculptor and installation artist Pepón Osorio was born in Santurce, Puerto Rico. Osorio moved to New York, where he enrolled at Lehman College and earned a degree in sociology and then an M.A. degree from Columbia University in 1986. After graduating, Osorio worked in the child abuse prevention unit of the Human Resources Administration, working primarily with the Latino community. Since 1985, Osorio has participated in visual arts projects influenced by his experience as a social worker in the Bronx. His pieces often evolve from the interaction with the neighborhoods and people he works with. Osorio has received a number of awards, including grants and fellowships from the Rockefeller Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts and the Lila Wallace Arts Partners International Artist Program. 

Pictured: "Scene of the Crime (Whose Crime?);" Pepón Osorio; 1993; furniture, video and objects; 132 inches by 420 inches by 144 inches.

April 17:
 Jordan Bass

Sponsored by the creative writing program and the School of Liberal Arts

Jordan Bass is the managing editor of McSweeney's Publishing, where he's helped edit and design various books, both fiction and nonfiction, since 2004. Bass oversses McSweeney's Quarterly, a short-story journal. The publication has featured work by George Saunders, David Foster Wallace, Stephen King, Lydia Davis and many other notable writers. Bass has selected and edited several stories for the journal that have gone on to appear in the "Best American Short Stories," an annual anthology featuring some of the best short story fiction in contemporary American literature.

Pictured: Jordan Bass

April 24: Angela Dufresne

Angela Dufresne is a painter based in Brooklyn, N.Y. She received a B.F.A. degree in 1991 from the Kansas City Art Institute and an M.F.A. degree in 1998 from the Tyler School of Art, Temple University in Philadelphia. Her work has been showcased internationally in solo and group exhibitions. Dufresne is represented by Monya Rowe Gallery and CRG Gallery, both in New York. Writings about her paintings have appeared in a number of publications, including Interview magazine, The New York Times and The Boston Globe.

Pictured: "Blizzard," Angela Dufresne, 2013, oil on canvas, 42 inches by 62 inches