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Book Talk with Kristie C. Wolferman: The Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, a History

Date: Thursday, January 28, 2021
Time: 4 – 5 pm
Online event on Zoom


The monumental building known today as the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art opened in 1933 owing to a set of marvelously serendipitous circumstances.

Kristie C. Wolferman, author of The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art: A History, will tell us the story of the widowed, reclusive Mary Atkins who left funds to build an art museum, and of the newspaper publisher William Rockhill Nelson who bequeathed $11 million to purchase works of art. After several others close to Nelson provided funds for housing that collection, trustees of multiple estates were able to come together to erect a major museum where none had existed before.

Over the years, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art has grown in stature and holdings. It is now known not only for its outstanding American art, but for its Chinese and American Indian art collections and for photographs. Ms. Wolferman will virtually walk us through the museum’s history and introduce us to its dazzling 21st century renovations, including the new Bloch Building and the redesigned American Wing.

About the Author
Kristie C. Wolferman is author of The Osage in MissouriThe Indomitable Mary Easton Sibley: Pioneer of Women’s Education in Missouri; and The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art: Culture Comes to Kansas City, all three published by the University of Missouri Press. She lives in Kansas City, Missouri.