1301 Mississippi St.
Lawrence Kansas 66045United States
Located on Kansas University's campus, the free Spencer Museum of Art's compact galleries display culturally diverse collections spanning centuries and continents.
The free Spencer Museum of Art on Kansas University's campus is cultural immersion lite. Depending on the intensity of your interests, you can survey the art museum's 11 galleries in as little as an hour or as long as a day. Installed on two floors are 37,000 European, North American and East Asian artworks. There are strong collections of medieval art, Japanese Edo-period prints, 20th-century Chinese paintings and American quilts (shown on a rotating exhibit schedule). The ethnographic collection includes 10,000 Native American, African, Latin American and Australian artifacts. A dramatically lit black box theater displays contemporary pieces. Kansas painters represented include abstract landscapist Robert Sudlow and muralist John Steuart Curry (who painted the Topeka capitol murals). Free, hour-long docent tours are offered. There's also the cool, self-guided cell phone tour option. Look for the phone icon posted next to artwork and call 785/338-9467 to hear about the piece. Take advantage of free art symposiums on Monday nights. Photography without flash is allowed. We found gallery security guards pleasant, art-smart and happy to talk with curious patrons about the installations.