Johnson County Community College
12345 College Boulevard, Overland Park | nermanmuseum.org
Drawing only from the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art's permanent collection, museum director Bruce Hartman selected works by 32 artists with local ties to line the first-floor gallery walls for Abstract Kansas City. The result: a half-century-spanning who's who of KC painters (the oldest painting was Wilbur Niewald's "Mountains II" watercolor, from 1961), gathered in a show that demanded multiple visits. It's rare enough to see so many pieces of locally produced art on the walls of a major KC institution, but the real power of the show was in its wide scope. The artwork on display reflected the varying styles and mediums of Kansas City art production, finding room for Anne Lindberg's quiet graphite lines, Lauren Mabry's color-saturated ceramic cylinder and Sharon Patten's flurried gestural canvas. Our only complaint: The history on display here was history too soon.