Ulrich reopens with new exhibitions

Gordon Parks, “Boy with Junebug,” 1963, Ulrich collection.
Gordon Parks, “Boy with Junebug,” 1963, Ulrich collection.

Wichita State’s Ulrich Museum of Art has reopened to the public with four exhibitions on display through May 8.

“Gordon Parks: I, too, am America” and Renée Stout: Ghosts” are part of a citywide collaboration featuring the work of African American artists. 

The 40 photographs in the Parks exhibition come from the Ulrich’s holdings of 170 images created by the internationally known Kansas native. This exhibition highlights pieces from seven of the stories Parks produced while at LIFE magazine.

A contemporary artist, Stout is known for her reflections on African American heritage and the visual culture of the African diaspora. This exhibition is from 2012 works which are part of the Ulrich collection.

The 23rd Faculty Biennial, “It’s All Part of the Process,” showcases WSU faculty work in a wide range of media as well as the personal processes used in creating them. 

“Solving for X=Identity: Sharing Matrilineal Memories” examines home through the eyes of mothers and grandmothers by dance and sociology faculty at WSU. 

The Ulrich’s new regular hours (masks and social distancing required) are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Admission is free.  

“Awaiting” glass tile mosaic by WSU faculty member Tina Murano with assistant Rose Boundy.
“Awaiting” glass tile mosaic by WSU faculty member Tina Murano with assistant Rose Boundy.

Tickets on sale for Illuminations 2020

Botanica’s popular Illuminations – named a top 10 holiday event by USA Today – will again light up the gardens this holiday season but with a few modifications due to Covid-19 precautions. In addition to the regular stroll among 2 million lights, Botanica has added a drive-through option. Tickets have gone on sale for both the walk-through and drive-through versions.

Tickets must be purchased in advance at botanica.org and the number of guests will be limited. The walk-through event will open Nov. 14 and run through Jan. 9. Tickets are $13 for adults with discounts for members and children. The cost for the drive-through (Nov. 14-Jan. 30) will be $20 per car and $25 on weekends. No tickets will be sold at the door.

Music Theatre shifts shows to 2021

For the safety of cast and audiences, Music Theatre Wichita has moved all five summer 2020 productions to next year. “Grease,” “The Wizard of Oz,” “Something Rotten!,” “Twelfth Night” and “Kinky Boots” will be performed June-August 2021, which is the 50th anniversary of the Wichita tradition. 

In the meantime, MTWichita staff is creating new online programming and special live events. Membership in MTWichita’s new Spotlight Society affords patrons the chance to experience many behind-the-scenes adventures and to participate in Wayne’s Movie Club, which features weekly musical films with commentary by Wayne Bryan, producing artistic director 

For more information, visit mtwichita.org.  

Ulrich’s art from a distance

“Twister Grande (tall)”

In addition to launching a series of billboards featuring art from its collection, WSU’s Ulrich Museum in August is adding a new sculpture to its world-renowned collection.

The Ulrich commissioned Alice Aycock, recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award in Contemporary Sculpture, to create “Twister Grande (tall)” for installation on the Innovation Campus. The Martin H. Bush Outdoor Sculpture Collection’s 80 pieces are accessible to the public throughout the campus.

Since the Ulrich has been closed to visitors because of the pandemic, the museum will unveil 20 billboards around Wichita showing works from the permanent collection from July through November.

“Our goal is to reach as many people as possible,” said Ulrich Director Leslie Brothers, who created the public art campaign. “We want people to know that they matter and that this art experience is for everyone.”

For a map of the sculpture collection or info on the billboards, visit ulrich.wichita.edu.