Spiva Center for the Arts Presents: Missouri Art Now, A Bicentennial Celebration, May 29 – July 17, 2021

Tom Schiller’s “Burb” from Kansas City

(Joplin, MO) – Sixty works from artists across Missouri are represented in a traveling exhibit  to commemorate Missouri’s 200 years of statehood. Missouri Art Now, A Bicentennial Celebration is a juried exhibit that showcases the state’s dynamic visual arts culture and diversity. Artists ages 18 and older who reside in Missouri were eligible to enter the show. Among the nearly 400 entries, 60 works were chosen for the exhibition.

“We wanted to make sure the art represents works from each region of the state, so locale played a significant role in selecting art for this exhibition,” said Jill Sullivan, executive director of Post Art Library in Joplin, who helped oversee the exhibition. Sullivan says her organization reached out to their partner organizations in each region to determine the selection. In addition to seeing art well represented across the state, the types of work vary, including acrylic and oil paintings, photography, sculpture, mixed-media, ceramics, and watercolor. Subject matter ranges from abstract to landscapes, portraiture, and more.

Sullivan sees the exhibit as a snapshot of what’s happening right now in Missouri arts during the 200th year as a state. “Missouri has had a rich history in art. It’s also important to recognize Missouri’s strong, vibrant visual arts culture and artists today,” said Sullivan. “I think it accomplishes what we set out to do for this traveling exhibit during the bicentennial.”

The traveling exhibit began with a stop in Columbia and will exhibit at Spiva Center for the Arts in Joplin from May 29–July 17, Hannibal Arts council in Hannibal from July 24–September 4 and will finish with a run at the Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art in St. Joseph from September 18 to November 7. Missouri Art Now, A Bicentennial Collaboration is a collaboration between The Arts Council of Southeast Missouri, Cape Girardeau; the Hannibal Arts Council, Hannibal; Post Art Library and Spiva Center for the Arts, Joplin; and the Albrecht-Kemper Museum, Saint Joseph.

Missouri 2021 is a statewide initiative of the State Historical Society of Missouri to promote a better understanding of Missouri and its regions, communities and people. Keep updated on all Missouri 2021 happenings at missouri2021.org and by following the bicentennial on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @missouri2021.

About Spiva Center for the Arts:

George A. Spiva Center for the Arts is a non-profit exhibition, education and cultural center in Joplin, Missouri, and is considered the fine-arts hub of the four-state region. Spiva was founded in 1947 by George A. Spiva, a local businessman, philanthropist and art lover, who believed opportunities in the arts should be available to all. Spiva offers three galleries of exhibits and educational programs for the young and old. There is no charge to view Spiva’s exhibits. For more information, call 417.623.0183.or visit www.spivaarts.org.


Susan Adams, Interim Director
Spiva Center for the Arts

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