Past Exhibitions at the KIA
|Orna Ben-Ami: Entire Life in a Package
June 8 - August 18, 2019
Orna Ben-Ami brings attention to the global refugee crisis through her welded iron works in this exhibition, creating highly symbolic pieces that carry universal, local and deeply personal meanings. Ben-Ami has developed of unique process of selecting photographs of people with their belongings, sculpting the belongings in iron and attaching the welded pieces to the enlarged photographs. Ben-Ami cuts and welds the iron by hand to "soften"it and shape into familiar forms that represent the strongholds of identity and physical and emotional weight of their journey. She is one of the few female welders celebrated internationally.
|Rewards of Wisdom: Contemporary Chinese Ink Painting
March 23 - June 16
Over thousands of years, the tradition of Chinese calligraphy and painting has manifested a broad visual language that has served as a cultural wellspring for a person's artistic pursuits and inner character. The artists on view are influenced by millennia of tradition, including that of literati painting, an approach defined by emotional and intellectual growth as the pathway to quality artistic expression.
|The Feeling Is Mutual: New Work by Maya Freelon
March 14 - June 2, 2019
Praised as a "vibrant, beating assemblage of color," the tissue paper sculptures of Maya Freelon have been exhibited internationally in Paris, Italy, Jamaica, Madagascar, and in the U.S. at the Smithsonian Museum of African American Art. Fragile yet vibrant, they are imbued with the vigor of moving energy.
|2019 High School Area Show
April 26-May 26, 2019
This annual juried exhibition celebrates the work of high school artists in Southwest Michigan. Students who qualify may concurrently enter the 6th District Congressional Art Competition, and the winner will receive a trip to Washington DC to see their art on view in the U.S. Capitol. (shown: Finn Roberts, Van Buren Tech: An Out of Body Experience, digital art)
|The Expressionist Figure
January 19 - May 5, 2019
Abstract Expressionism, first developed in the 1940s, garnered an almost immediate reaction from a group of painters who began reintroducing the figure into this high-energy postwar movement. The Expressionist Figure examines a large group of the leading artists of the time, including important women painters and their contributions to mid-twentieth century expressionist painting. The exhibition includes prominent artists, from Deborah Remington (who co-founded the legendary Six Gallery in San Francisco), to the leading feminist painter of the late 20th century, Nancy Spero. During a self-imposed exile to Paris, Spero completed the important series, the Black Paris Paintings, and established herself as one of the important social and political artists of her time.
|Young Artists of Kalamazoo County
March 16 - April 14, 2019
Every year, art teachers in the Kalamazoo County schools (private, public, and charter schools) submit a selection of works produced by their students, featured in an exhibition that is a delight to behold. In one of our most popular shows each year, the KIA's galleries are filled with the most creative, colorful, whimsical art by young artists from kindergarten through eighth grades.
|Inka Essenhigh: A Fine Line
September 15 - January 6, 2019
Essenhigh is known for her experiments with enamel paint, traditional oils, and printmaking in her fantastical images of the everyday, both urban and rural. Essenhigh s large-format paintings are filled with otherworldly expression; ghosts and gods, monsters and maenads carry Essenhigh's portrayal of the 21st-century human from her brush into the viewer's imagination.
October 27 - March 3, 2019
Curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist, do it began in Paris in 1993 as a conversation about how exhibition formats could be rendered more flexible and open-ended. This discussion led to the question of whether written instructions by artists, as a point of departure, could be interpreted anew every time they were enacted. Nearly 20 years later, do it has been featured in at least 50 different locations worldwide. Each do it exhibition is uniquely site-specific because it engages the local community in a dialogue that responds to and adds a new set of instructions, while it remains global in the scope of its ever-expanding repertoire. This open exhibition model has become the longest-running and most far-reaching exhibition to ever take place, giving new meaning to the concept of the "Exhibition in Progress."
|Watanabe: Japanese Print Envoy
December 15, 2018-March 10, 2019
Japanese publisher Shozaburo Watanabe started his business in the early 20th century, studying the traditions of Japanese woodcuts and hiring printers who could master the old techniques. To distinguish his prints, he hired designers capable of combining traditional subjects with the new style. Like the prints of the previous century, his were colorful images of Japan's people and natural beauty, but with a fresh, western-influenced style to appeal to European and American art-lovers. His leadership established a new aesthetic in the print market.