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Excellence in the Arts

Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum

Part of Washington University’s Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts, the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum was founded in 1881 as the St. Louis School and Museum of Fine Arts and remains the oldest art museum west of the Mississippi River. The Museum contains impressive collections of 19th-, 20th-, and 21st-century European and American paintings, sculptures, prints, installations, and photographs. In the past nine years the Museum’s exhibit schedule has been international in scope, bringing influential artists to and developing groundbreaking scholarly exhibitions for the St. Louis community. In addition to its outstanding curatorial program, the Kemper's education and outreach programs have expanded to include record numbers of visits by area elementary and high schools and social service programs. Along with such distinguished Modernist exhibits as Georges Braque and the Cubist Still Life, 1928–1945, in 2013, the Kemper's commitment to contemporary art and ideas is exemplified by recent surveys like To See Without Being Seen: Contemporary Art and Drone Warfare, in 2016, and earlier, Encountering the City: The Urban Experience in Contemporary Art, in 2014. Such diverse contemporary artists as Sharon Lockhart (2010-2011), Luis Camnitzer (2011), Elizabeth Peyton (2011), and Rashid Johnson (2013-2014) have also had major solo shows at the Kemper, bringing their challenging works in many mediums to the St. Louis region.
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