The Artspace provides numerous opportunities for KCAI students to experience working in a gallery setting. Students also have the opportunity to exhibit their work in shows at the Artspace, including the annual Bachelor of Fine Arts show.


Block internships

The Block internship was initiated in 2004 through financial contributions from the H&R Block Foundation. This compensated internship provides the intern with the opportunity to gain critical professional experience and job skills that augment the rigorous academic education received at the Kansas City Art Institute.

It also supplies staff support that enables the Artspace to more fully realize its mission as a unique contemporary art institution focused on both visual art and visual art education. Block interns work closely with the Artspace staff to provide mentorship to work-study assistants and academic interns. They are involved in all aspects of the Artspace's programming including exhibitions, educational and outreach programs and collection management. The experience they gain from this internship prepares them for promising futures.

Academic internships

The Artspace offers academic internships for outstanding KCAI students. Academic interns are required to assist with various projects under the supervision of the senior Artspace staff. Areas of focus for academic interns include management assistance with the permanent collection, research assistance for main gallery exhibitions and advanced administrative support including maintenance of the Artspace resource collection, exhibition archives and permanent collection files. The internship culminates with an independent curatorial project.

Interns are expected to have a strong background in art history, preferably pursuing a double major in studio art and art history at KCAI, and should have prior experience working with art objects and/or collections. Academic internships are organized by Career Services at KCAI. All applicants must apply and be interviewed by senior Artspace staff. For more information, contact Career Services.

Work-study program

The Artspace emphasizes visual art education and professional development for emerging artists and arts professionals. As a teaching museum, the Artspace offers a range of educational opportunities that allow students to gain critical insight into careers in the field of gallery work and provide practical, hands-on experience in a gallery setting.

In addition to internships, the Artspace also offers opportunities for KCAI students to work as gallery assistants through the work-study program at KCAI. Gallery assistants are responsible for monitoring the gallery, working at the reception desk, answering questions, conducting gallery tours, assisting with gallery preparation and art installation and assisting with office administration. Often gallery assistants remain on the staff for the duration of their academic career at KCAI. Working as a gallery assistant also can lead to an academic internship during the student’s senior year, as well as extended work opportunities or a professional internship at the Artspace after graduation.

Students interested in applying to the work-study program can make an appointment with the office of financial aid. Applicants must submit a resume, a letter of interest and three references to the Artspace staff. 

Annual B.F.A. Exhibition

Every year the Artspace organizes and hosts the B.F.A. exhibition for students graduating from the Kansas City Art Institute. Featuring work from all departments at KCAI –– animation, art history, ceramics, creative writing, digital filmmaking, fiber, graphic design, illustration, painting, photography, printmaking and sculpture –– the exhibition includes work by 90 to 120 graduating seniors and is the only show in which all the galleries space in the Artspace are utilized for the exhibition.

The annual B.F.A. exhibitions are among the most popular and widely attended exhibitions organized by the Artspace. They are highly anticipated by the KCAI community and the general public, appealing to the business, corporate and arts communities alike. Dozens of public tours for area high schools, community colleges and groups from outside of the region frequently occur.

The Artspace also offers a range of professional practice programming for graduating seniors in conjunction with the exhibition and in collaboration with KCAI's Career Services, the Office of Student Life, the Exhibition and Outreach Committee and the academic departments at the college. Workshops and programs include an introductory forum highlighting past B.F.A. exhibitions and projects; a workshop providing basic information on preparing work for exhibition and advice on site-specific and complex installations; and the guest critic program, which provides an opportunity for seniors to be selected for additional critiques by distinguished arts professionals. The entire experience of the B.F.A. exhibition and related programming provides professional practice for these emerging artist and a unique opportunity to exhibit with their graduating class.

"2012 B.F.A. Exhibition" submissions are due March 1. Make your submission.

"2012 B.F.A. Exhibition" timeline

"2012 B.F.A. Exhibition" presentation resources