State Fair Community College

The Daum Museum of Contemporary Art

The Daum Museum of Contemporary Art collects, preserves, interprets and exhibits modern and contemporary works of art and design for the educational enrichment of students, faculty and the general public. Funding for exhibitions is provided by donations to the museum endowment fund, in-kind donations and grants from other foundations and agencies such as the Missouri Arts Council. 

Kindred Virtuosities: Recent Work by Miki Baird, Garry Noland and Susan White
Sept. 26-Dec. 22

Kindred Virtuosities is an exhibition of diverse artworks by three artists whose studios are located in Kansas City—Miki Baird, Garry Noland and Susan White. Although clearly individual, the exhibits by these artists share a number of characteristics that mark them as compatible and complementary explorations. Among their common strategies is the embrace of nonart materials and alternative processes and a facility for working in both two and three dimensions. Shared formal procedures include layering, systematic organization and mass replication.

Miki Baird
alternates between meticulously designed photographic assemblages of thousands of images and enormous accumulations of shredded junk mail, collected from the mailbox of one address. Both of her endeavors engage everyday phenomena by weaving together the designs and repetitions inherent in the quotidian.

Garry Noland
forges links between pattern, process and transformation. His large-scale duct-tape collages engage the vocabulary of vintage domesticity—peeling layers of aged wallpaper or linoleum flooring or the controlled randomness of a crazy quilt. This embrace of the abject and found object continues in his series of Failed Monuments, where large nuggets of reclaimed dock foam are resuscitated by a partial gilding of golden adhesive tape.

Finally, Susan White is engaged primarily with pyrography and “thorn works”—three-dimensional assemblages made from the thorns of the honey locust tree. Her pyrographs, large drawings on thick rag paper, are made with the use of a burning tool with which White creates drifting galaxies of many small marks that become poetic evocations of constellations or cells or prayers. Her thorn sculptures, in their accumulation, have a more architectural character, although the right-angle alignment of thorn to branch creates a cubistic tracery that relates as much to drawn lines as it does to constructed forms.
Recent American Ceramics from the Collection of Daum Museum of Contemporary Art
Jan. 30-May 29

Daum Museum’s permanent collection of 160 contemporary ceramics offers a survey of work by many of the best-known American practitioners of the last 50 years (although most examples date from the 1990s forward). The collection focuses on large-scale sculptural forms that are primarily medium driven, although there is a fair representation of artists interested in producing idea- and narrative-centered objects.

Highlights of the collection include iconic examples by artists associated with the generation that reinvigorated American ceramics after World War II, including Peter Voulkos, Rudy Autio, John Mason, Ken Ferguson, Karen Karnes, and Ruth Duckworth. Artists of the following generation include Chris Gustin, Peter Callas, John Balistreri, and Arnold Zimmerman. Ceramists interested in a conceptual art practice are represented by Betty Woodman, Ramon Elozua, Anne Currier, Marc Leuthold, and Tony Marsh. Audience-engaging story telling is found in sculptures by Sergei Isupov, Michael Lucero, Arthur Gonzalez, and Sun-Koo Yuh.

An important segment of the Daum’s holdings is comprised by the many ceramists who live and work in the Midwest, including Jim Leedy, Jun Kaneko, Victor Babu, Carry Esser, George Timmock, Yoshiro Ikeda, Joyce Jablonski, and Keith Ekstam. Among the artists in the collection who live outside the United States are Carlo Zauli, Ole Lislerud, Ah Leon, and Wouter Dam.
Christopher Russell: Ceramics
Jan. 30-May 29

This exhibition focuses on recent ceramic still-life tableaus by New York City-based artist Christopher Russell.

Russell is known for his intricate and realistic depictions of the natural world, including plants, bees and birds, along with fragments of their natural habitats—honeycomb hives and leafy branches. The artist employs hand-built, white terra cotta with a monochromatic yellow-ochre glaze, similar in effect to an ash glaze. With titles like Mean Bird with Apples and Tooth and Claw, the works portray a lively naturalism that does not shrink from representing the contest for survival that challenges wildlife on a daily basis.

Russell has recently complicated these naturalist inclinations by creating allegorical compositions comprised by ceramic iterations of avian life combined with luxe decorative objects, which, in their concentration, constitute a gentle elegy to the “end of empire.” In After the Golden Age, 45 ceramic objects are gathered into a crowded still life of forms inspired by art history and the decorative arts. Among them are a spiky network of obelisks, classical urns with fruit, fragments of antique sculpture, flitting birds, and a rococo nautilus-shell cup. The tableau explores the notions of artifice and material value, a study that is enhanced by the choice of the ceramics medium.

Russell (b. 1961) studied at Wesleyan University and completed residencies at Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts (North Edgecomb, Maine) and Kohler Arts Center’s Arts/Industry Residency Program (Sheboygan, Wis.). He has had solo exhibitions at Julie Saul Gallery (NYC) and Everson Museum of Art (Syracuse, NY). Group shows include venues at Independent Art Projects (North Adams, Mass.), Watershed Center for the Ceramics Arts, Greenwich House Pottery (NYC), and The Clay Studio (Philadelphia, Pa.). Russell received a commission from the Metropolitan Transit Authority’s Art for Transit, 9th Avenue Brooklyn station.
Museum hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 1-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 
The museum is closed on Mondays.  
Admission is free. 

For more information, call (660) 530-5888 or visit
and like the museum’s Facebook page at
Financial assistance for these projects has been provided by the Missouri Arts Council, a state agency.

We live in a visual culture that creates images that inform and entertain us.

Supporting the Arts

Please join us in keeping the arts alive for our students and the community. Contact the SFCC Foundation to make a tax deductible contribution to support programing at the Daum Museum of Contemporary Art.

Giving Levels

Director’s Circle Membership Levels

Season Underwriter • $5,000 and above
     • Recognition in two exhibit catalogues and on wall text for the entire season’s exhibits

Exhibition Underwriter • $2,500 - $4,999
     • Recognition in two exhibit catalogues and on wall text for two exhibits

Exhibition Sponsor • $1,000 - $2,499
     • Recognition in one exhibit catalogue and on wall text for one exhibit

Gold Membership Levels

Benefactor - $500
Associate - $250
Friend - $100

General Membership Levels

Family - $60
Individual - $50

Student - $35 (must provide copy of current SFCC student ID)

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