Events Calendar

All events are free and open to everyone unless otherwise noted. See individual listings for events that require registration.

January 18

Activity

ART CART PLAYING WITH PATTERNS

1PM – 3:30PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, SAMUEL H. KRESS FOUNDATION GALLERY, 407

Discover the power of a singular shape with repetition! Use paper and foam shapes to create a composition inspired by Harry Bertoia’s “Yellow and Red”. The Art Cart is a drop-in activity station where children and grown-ups enjoy hands-on art projects together, taking inspiration from original works of art on view.

January 22

Talk

SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART DIGITAL INITIATIVE CONVENING

3:30PM – 6PM
THE COMMONS, SPOONER HALL, 1340 JAYHAWK BLVD

KU faculty and staff are invited to learn about the Spencer Museum’s digital initiatives and digital projects from other KU units with the goal of discovering opportunities for digital collaboration across campus. The convening will start with short individual presentations, followed by participant discussion, and finish with a small networking reception. This event is funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation as part of the Spencer Museum’s Digital Initiative through the Integrated Arts Research Initiative.

Sponsored By: Spencer Museum of Art

January 26

Talk

SLOW ART SUNDAY CHADO

2PM – 3PM

Slow down at the Spencer on the last Sunday of each month and spend time getting to know one great work of art. Slow Art Sunday features one work for visitors to contemplate and converse about with Museum staff. In January, get to know "Chado" by Karen LaMonte.

February 05

Talk

SAWYER SEMINAR MISOGYNOIR IN MEDICINE

5:30PM – 6:30PM
THE HALL CENTER FOR THE HUMANITIES, CONFERENCE HALL; 900 SUNNYSIDE AVENUE, LAWRENCE, KS 66045

Moya Bailey (Northeastern University) is a scholar of critical race, feminist, and disability studies. Her work focuses on Black women’s use of digital media to promote social justice as acts of self-affirmation and health promotion, and she is particularly interested in how race, gender, and sexuality are represented in media and medicine. To learn more about KU’s Sawyer Seminar visit chronicconditions.ku.edu.

Sponsored By: Hall Center for the Humanities, Kansas African Studies Center, Spencer Museum of Art

February 07

Talk

RED HOT RESEARCH

4PM – 5:30PM
THE COMMONS, SPOONER HALL, 1340 JAYHAWK BLVD

Red Hot Research brings together scholars from different disciplines to deliver six-minute presentations about current research. Audience members are encouraged to connect with the speakers and one another during breaks.

Sponsored By: The Commons

February 07

Social

SHATTERING THE VOID OPENING RECEPTION

5PM – 7PM
SALINA ART CENTER

Join the Salina Art Center for a reception celebrating the newly opened exhibition Shattering the Void: Realms of Meaning in East Asian Art, curated by and featuring artwork from the Spencer Museum of Art. Enjoy Asian cuisine, music, and more. This exhibition is part of the Freeman Foundation K–12 Educational Outreach Initiative.

Sponsored By: Freeman Foundation

February 15

Activity

ART CART ART CART: FOUND AND ASSEMBLED

1PM – 3:30PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, 20/21 GALLERY, 405

Learn how artist Louise Nevelson used assemblage art to build your own mixed-media 3D sculpture similar to her Young Tree XXII. The Art Cart is a drop-in activity station where children and grown-ups enjoy hands-on art projects together, taking inspiration from original works of art on view.

February 19

Talk

SAWYER SEMINAR CHRONICITY AND SYSTEMS OF CARE IN GHANAIAN COMMUNITIES IN EUROPE

5:30PM – 6:30PM
THE UNIVERSITY OF KANSAS SCHOOL OF MEDICINE—WICHITA, ROBERTS AMPHITHEATER; 1010 NORTH KANSAS STREET, WICHITA, KS 67214

Ama de-Graft Aikins (University College London) discusses her research on “chronicity”—the complexity of addressing disease conditions that progress slowly, are of long duration, and cause debility—among Ghanaian communities living in London, Amsterdam, and Berlin. She demonstrates the ways that place, migration history, and generational status intersect with chronic illness in these communities and the implications for long-term care. To learn more about KU’s Sawyer Seminar visit chronicconditions.ku.edu.

Sponsored By: Hall Center for the Humanities, Kansas African Studies Center, Spencer Museum of Art

February 20

Class

PENNING THE PAST

3PM – 5PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, KEMPER FAMILY FOUNDATIONS BALCONY, 408

Sharpen your writing skills while exploring how the stories we tell about the past shape our current realities. Spencer Museum interns Sara Stepp and Casey Keel lead writers of all levels through a series of exercises prompted by works on view in Past Presence. Then choose a spot in the galleries to find your flow. Bring your favorite device or notebook and we’ll provide free pencils and coffee. Following the workshop is an opportunity to record what you’ve written to share in our app and the exhibition Past Presence.

February 21

Activity

DISCOVERY DAY: CELEBRATING EVOLUTION

10AM – 12PM
THE PANORAMA, NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM, DYCHE HALL, 1345 JAYHAWK BLVD

Join Spencer staff for an Art Cart At Large in the Panorama of the KU Natural History Museum during their Discovery Day celebrating the birthdays of scientists Charles Darwin and Alfred Russell Wallace. Enjoy cake and learn about evolution and extinction with hands-on activities at this free, family-friendly event.

Sponsored By: Natural History Museum

February 23

Talk

SLOW ART SUNDAY

2PM – 3PM

Slow down at the Spencer on the last Sunday of each month and spend time getting to know one great work of art. Slow Art Sunday features one work for visitors to contemplate and converse about with Museum staff.

February 26

Talk

SAWYER SEMINAR CRITICAL NARRATIVES IN VISUALIZING THE BLACK BODY IN PHOTOGRAPHY AND POPULAR CULTURE

5:30PM – 6:30PM
THE FORUM AT MARVIN HALL; 1465 JAYHAWK BLVD, LAWRENCE, KS 66045

Photographer Deborah Willis (New York University) discusses how images of the black subject have been forever fixed in the popular imagination through the photographer. Her lecture mediates between the objectification of the black body and (re) presenting the black body as it connects to the photographs of Gordon Parks and other photo artist working today. To learn more about KU's Sawyer Seminar visti chronicconditions.ku.edu.

February 29

Activity

PAST FORWARD RECORDING SESSION

9:30AM – 12:30PM
LAWRENCE PUBLIC LIBRARY, 707 VERMONT ST

Can a work of art prompt memories of your past that resonate with life today? Chat with Spencer Archivist Robert Hickerson and explore works of art from the Museum’s collection that might spark personal meaning for you. Then record your story to share in our app and in the exhibition Past Presence.

March 04

Talk

SAWYER SEMINAR RENDERING THE INVISIBLE, VISIBLE: WRITING ABOUT BLACK WOMEN’S BODIES

5:30PM – 6:30PM
THE UNIVERSITY OF KANSAS MEMORIAL UNION, MALOTT ROOM (LEVEL 6); 1301 JAYHAWK BOULEVARD, LAWRENCE, KS 66045

Playwright and teacher Charly Evon Simpson shares the ways that her work centers Black women’s bodies and how Black bodies have been viewed and treated differently in medicine. She was recently named the 2019–2020 recipient of the Paula Vogel Playwriting Award from the Vineyard Theatre, and is a co-recipient of the Dramatists Guild’s Lanford Wilson Award. To learn more about KU’s Sawyer Seminar visit chronicconditions.ku.edu.

Sponsored By: Hall Center for the Humanities, Kansas African Studies Center, Spencer Museum of Art

March 04

Talk

VOTES FOR WOMEN: A VISUAL HISTORY

5:30PM – 6:30PM
KANSAS UNION, KANSAS ROOM, 1301 JAYHAWK BOULEVARD

In celebration of the centennial of the 19th Amendment, Amanda Burdan, American art specialist and curator at the Brandywine River Museum, discusses visual culture of the suffrage movement in the United States.

Sponsored By: Kress Foundation Department of Art History, School of Journalism and Mass Communications, Spencer Museum of Art

March 05

Talk

THE FLIPSIDE THE ANATOMY AND AFTERLIFE OF PERFORMANCE ART

5:30PM – 6:30PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, SAM AND CONNIE PERKINS CENTRAL COURT, 317, SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, ESTELLE S. AND ROBERT A. LONG ELLIS FOUNDATION GALLERY, 315, SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, DOLPH SIMONS FAMILY GALLERY, 316

The Flipside takes you behind the art to explore the anatomy of performance and what remains to tell its story. Join artistic collaborator Joel Sanderson, Professor Maki Kaneko, and Spencer Curator Kris Ercums as they pull back the curtain on the choices that artists, curators, collaborators, and art historians make about staging, documenting, preserving, and interpreting the original experience and enduring artifacts of performance art.

March 12

Talk

SENIOR SESSION PAST PRESENCE

10:15AM – 11:15AM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, KEMPER FAMILY FOUNDATIONS BALCONY, 408

Sara Stepp, a PhD candidate in art history and curatorial intern at the Spencer Museum, offers insights into the ways that artists reckon with, reflect on, deconstruct, and reimagine history to make connections between the past and the present. Senior Sessions are designed for senior citizens but open to everyone.

March 16

Talk

SAWYER SEMINAR THE FACES AND FACETS OF BELONGING: THE SEEN AND THE UNSEEN IN SCIENTIFIC VISIONS OF GENETIC HUMAN DIFFERENCE

5:30PM – 6:30PM
UNIVERSITY OF KANSAS MEMORIAL UNION, ALDERSON AUDITORIUM (LEVEL 4), 1301 JAYHAWK BLVD, LAWRENCE, KS 66045

Duana Fullwiley (Stanford University) presents her research on the increasing intersections of social identities, health outcomes, and molecular genetics, exploring questions of privacy, informed consent, information ownership, and ethics. Fullwiley’s current work focuses on ancestry genetics and how scientists use this data to create new technologies for personalized medicine, genealogical ancestry tracing, and DNA forensics. To learn more about KU’s Sawyer Seminar visit chronicconditions.ku.edu.

Sponsored By: Kansas African Studies Center, Spencer Museum of Art, Hall Center for the Humanities

March 18

Activity

READ ACROSS LAWRENCE ART PARTY!

4PM – 5PM
LAWRENCE PUBLIC LIBRARY, 707 VERMONT ST

Join us at the Lawrence Public Library for this Read Across Lawrence event. Inspired by the artistic character Lupe from the book "Front Desk," we’ll draw, collage, and more! You can also learn how to write your name in Chinese with the help of Lawrence Public Library staffer Yilan Zhao. Designed for kids age 7–11.

Sponsored By: Lawrence Public Library

March 20

Talk

RED HOT GRADUATE RESEARCH

4PM – 5:30PM
THE COMMONS, SPOONER HALL, 1340 JAYHAWK BLVD

Red Hot Graduate Research brings together student scholars from different disciplines to deliver six-minute flash presentations about current research. Audience members are encouraged to connect with the speakers and one other during breaks.

Sponsored By: The Commons

March 21

Activity

ART CART BORN-AGAIN BIRDS

1PM – 3:30PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, LARRY AND BARBARA MARSHALL FAMILY BALCONY, 404

Create your own imaginary species of bird that has gone extinct by using “apocalyptic” materials inspired by the exhibition "Audubon in the Anthropocene." Staff from KU’s Natural History Museum share real bird specimens and examples of their nests. The Art Cart is a drop-in activity station where children and grown-ups enjoy hands-on art projects together, taking inspiration from original works of art on view.

March 24

Talk

STAGING SHIMOMURA LECTURE SERIES

5:30PM – 6:30PM
317

Hiroko Ikegami (Kobe University) opens this series of talks with an examination of Roger Shimomura’s Seven Kabuki Plays against the backdrop of his Diary paintings, both of which draw on his grandmother’s diaries from the period of the attack on Pearl Harbor and the subsequent incarceration of Japanese Americans. In collaboration with KU Associate Professor of Japanese Art Maki Kaneko, Ikegami conducted an interview with Shimomura for the Oral History Archives of Japanese Art, where she serves as vice director.

March 26

Talk

SENIOR SESSION PROVOCATIVE PERFORMANCES

10:15AM – 11:15AM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, SAM AND CONNIE PERKINS CENTRAL COURT, 317

Spencer Curator Kris Ercums explores the role of performance in Roger Shimomura’s artistic practice. In addition to showing digital recordings of performances, Ercums discusses connections with paintings, prints, theatrical props, and ephemera on display. Senior Sessions are designed for senior citizens but open to everyone.

March 27

Talk

RED HOT RESEARCH

4PM – 5:30PM
THE COMMONS, SPOONER HALL, 1340 JAYHAWK BLVD

Red Hot Research brings together scholars from different disciplines to deliver six-minute flash presentations about current research. Audience members are encouraged to connect with the speakers and one other during breaks.

Sponsored By: The Commons

March 29

Talk

SLOW ART SUNDAY

2PM – 3PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART

Slow down at the Spencer on the last Sunday of each month and spend time getting to know one great work of art. Slow Art Sunday features one work for visitors to contemplate and converse about with Museum staff.

April 01

Talk

READ ACROSS LAWRENCE BRING YOUR OWN BOOK CLUB TOUR

6PM – 7:30PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART

Read this year’s Read Across Lawrence selection "The Round House" by Louise Erdrich, and join staff from the Lawrence Public Library and Spencer Museum to wander the galleries while discussing works of art that resonate with themes in the book. Continue the conversation over complimentary refreshments. Can’t make it on this date? You can also schedule a time to BYOBC (bring your own book club) to the Museum for a guided tour and reserve a gathering space for further discussion. Call 785.864.0126 or email aduke@ku.edu to inquire.

Sponsored By: Lawrence Public Library, Spencer Museum of Art

April 02

Talk

STAGING SHIMOMURA LECTURE SERIES

5:30PM – 6:30PM
317

Krystal Reiko Hauseur discusses her research for "Masking Identity: The Performance of Roger Shimomura" (2019), the first monograph on the subject. Reiko Hauser is an independent scholar and curator of Asian American art based in San Diego.

Sponsored By: Kress Foundation Department of Art History

April 03

Talk

RED HOT RESEARCH

4PM – 5:30PM
THE COMMONS, SPOONER HALL, 1340 JAYHAWK BLVD

Red Hot Research brings together scholars from different disciplines to deliver six-minute flash presentations about current research. Audience members are encouraged to connect with the speakers and one other during breaks.

Sponsored By: The Commons

April 05

Activity

DAY OF CREATIVITY

1PM – 4PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART

Explore creative processes in different disciplines and awaken your creative side. This community event includes performances, demonstrations, and hands-on activities that celebrate creativity. Free and fun for all ages. Visit www.spencerart.ku.edu for details.

April 09

Talk

SENIOR SESSION

10:15AM – 11:15AM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, LARRY AND BARBARA MARSHALL FAMILY BALCONY, 404

Join Spencer Curator Kate Meyer to explore three different variations of John James Audubon’s iconic series "The Birds of America" exhibited in "Audubon in the Anthropocene: Works by Matthew Day Jackson." Senior Sessions are designed for senior citizens but open to everyone.

April 10

Talk

RED HOT GRADUATE RESEARCH

4PM – 5:30PM
THE COMMONS, SPOONER HALL, 1340 JAYHAWK BLVD

Red Hot Graduate Research brings together student scholars from different disciplines to deliver six-minute presentations about current research. Audience members are encouraged to connect with the speakers and one another during breaks.

Sponsored By: The Commons

April 11

Activity

FIRST NATIONS STUDENT ASSOCIATION POWWOW & KU INDIGENOUS CULTURES FESTIVAL

12PM – 9PM
LIED CENTER OF KANSAS, 1600 STEWART DRIVE, LAWRENCE, KS 66045

Celebrate Native American culture and enjoy activities, food and craft vendors, presentations, workshops, and demonstrations led by Indigenous artists, scholars, and craftspeople.

Sponsored By: First Nations Student Association, Lied Center of Kansas, Haskell Indian Nations University, Office of the Provost, Native Faculty-Staff Council, Office of Multicultural Affairs, Office of the Vice Provost for Diversity & Equity, CLAS Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, Spencer Museum of Art, KU Film and Media Studies, KU Indigenous Studies Program

April 16

Talk

SAWYER SEMINAR BLACK MADNESS / MAD BLACKNESS

6PM – 7PM
LAWRENCE PUBLIC LIBRARY, AUDITORIUM, 707 VERMONT STREET, LAWRENCE, KS 66045

Therí Alyce Pickens (Bates College) rethinks the relationship between Blackness and disability. Pickens shows how Black speculative and science fiction authors craft new worlds that reimagine the intersection of Blackness and madness. Pickens demonstrates how the theorizations of race and disability that emerge from these works challenge the paradigms of subjectivity that white supremacy and ableism enforce. To learn more about KU’s Sawyer Seminar visit chronicconditions.ku.edu.

Sponsored By: Kansas African Studies Center, Spencer Museum of Art, Hall Center for the Humanities

April 22

Talk

FROM MURDER TO MUSEUMS: ABRAHAM LINCOLN, ADOLPH HITLER AND THE HUNT FOR NAZI LOOTED ART IN AMERICA

5:30PM – 7:30PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, RM 211, 1301 MISSISSIPPI ST

Join Raymond Dowd, an attorney specializing in copyright litigation and Nazi art looting, for an overview of art theft during World War II and how the sale of stolen works bankrolled large parts of the Nazi war machine. By exploring past and ongoing cases, Dowd discusses laws that were passed to address the looting, and examines the extent to which those laws have been successful in securing the return of stolen art to its rightful owners. The evening opens with an introduction to art law at 5:30PM, followed by Raymond Dowd’s keynote at 6:20PM, and a reception and gallery tours at 7:15PM. Space is limited. RSVP required: visitors@ku.edu or 785.864.4710.

Sponsored By: Federal Bar Association, KU School of Law, Spencer Museum of Art

April 23

Talk

SENIOR SESSION FRAGMENTS OF ANTIQUITY

10:15AM – 11:15AM

Join Spencer educator Rachel Straughn-Navarro to learn about the original context and symbolism of an Egyptian relief fragment showing a hunting scene on the Nile. Senior sessions are designed for senior citizens but open to everyone.

April 25

Activity

ART CART WRITE ABOUT ART

1PM – 3:30PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, JACK AND LAVON BROSSEAU CENTER FOR LEARNING, 318

Explore the connection between literature and art by making a journal for sketching or writing with decorative paper, stickers, and more. The Art Cart is a drop-in activity station where children and grown-ups enjoy hands-on art projects together, taking inspiration from original works of art on view. This Art Cart is part of the Paper Plains Literary Festival in Lawrence April 23–26. Visit paperplains.org for the full schedule.

April 29

Talk

SAWYER SEMINAR MEDICALIZING BLACKNESS AND MEASURING MISCEGENATION: RACE-CROSSING STUDIES AND THE LEGACIES OF SLAVERY

5:30PM – 6:30PM
HALL CENTER FOR THE HUMANITIES CONFERENCE HALL, 900 SUNNYSIDE AVE

Hall Center for the Humanities, 900 Sunnyside Ave Rana A. Hogarth (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign) examines medical knowledge about the so-called peculiarities of black people’s bodies produced during the era of slavery and its relationship to eugenic-era studies of race-crossing between blacks and whites. To learn more about KU’s Sawyer Seminar visit chronicconditions.ku.edu.

Sponsored By: Hall Center for the Humanities, Spencer Museum of Art, Kansas African Studies Center

April 30

Performance

CHANGING THE TIDES

6PM – 7:30PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, SAM AND CONNIE PERKINS CENTRAL COURT, 317

In celebration of National Poetry Month and the Women’s Vote Centennial, vocal ensemble The Meadowlark Project performs music by women composers, poets, and lyricists exploring ideas of womanhood, mortality, and progress. The recital features the premiere of “There Will Come Soft Rains,” a composition by KU doctoral student Allison McIntosh based on Sara Teasdale’s 1918 poem of the same title. The composition was commissioned by the Spencer Museum in conjunction with the exhibition "Audubon in the Anthropocene," which also draws inspiration from this poem.

Sponsored By: Spencer Museum of Art

May 01

Talk

RED HOT RESEARCH

4PM – 5:30PM
THE COMMONS, SPOONER HALL, 1340 JAYHAWK BLVD

Red Hot Research brings together scholars from different disciplines to deliver six-minute flash presentations about current research. Audience members are encouraged to connect with the speakers and one other during breaks.

May 07

Talk

STAGING SHIMOMURA LECTURE SERIES

5:30PM – 6:30PM
317

Scott Tsuchitani, an interdisciplinary artist and cinematographer based in San Francisco, discusses the influence of Roger Shimomura’s work on other artists, including his own. Tsuchitani’s paintings, prints, performances, and interventions challenge racial stereotypes in everyday life and museum practices.

Sponsored By: Kress Foundation Department of Art History

May 14

Talk

SENIOR SESSION MAKING AND DESIGNING JAPANESE TEA WARES

10:15AM – 11:15AM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, JACK AND LAVON BROSSEAU CENTER FOR LEARNING, 318

Join Rachel Quist, intern for Asian art, for a discussion of Japanese ceramics in the Spencer Museum collection. This talk focuses on the techniques used in making Japanese tea wares as well as the aesthetics that inform their design. Senior Sessions are designed for senior citizens but open to everyone.

May 16

Activity

ART CART LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION!

1PM – 3:30PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, SAM AND CONNIE PERKINS CENTRAL COURT, 317

Create a set design for a stage play in your own diorama influenced by the sets featured in the exhibition Staging Shimomura. The Art Cart is a drop-in activity station where children and grown-ups enjoy hands-on art projects together, taking inspiration from original works of art on view.

May 28

Talk

SENIOR SESSION EXPRESSIONISM IN GERMANY

10:15AM – 11:15AM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART, JACK AND LAVON BROSSEAU CENTER FOR LEARNING, 318

What is Expressionism? Join Celka Straughn, director of public practice, education, and research to delve into the national, political, colonial, religious, and social factors at play in the development and understandings of this art form across the 20th century in Germany. Senior Sessions are designed for senior citizens but open to everyone.

May 31

Talk

SLOW ART SUNDAY

2PM – 3PM
SPENCER MUSEUM OF ART

Slow down at the Spencer on the last Sunday of each month and spend time getting to know one great work of art. Slow Art Sunday features one work for visitors to contemplate and converse about with Museum staff.