Wichita has a diverse mix of museums, all with impressive collections and an ever-changing schedule of exhibitions. From showcasing new acquisitions or curating themed exhibits from their own collections to hosting special exhibitions traveling the country, there’s always something new to see at museums in the Heart of the Country.

Here’s a look at the latest exhibitions among museums in Wichita.

Blind artist Clarke Reynolds creates artwork

Envision Arts Gallery and Community Engagement Center 

Admission is free at the Envision Arts Gallery and Community Engagement Center.

April 5-June 28: “American Way Words” – As a part of its new artist-in-residence program, the Envision Arts Gallery and Community Engagement Center is presenting "American Way Words," a three-month exhibition presenting the renowned UK blind artist Clarke Reynolds, known for his interactive use of Braille in art.

Reynolds, a visionary born with limited sight in Havant, England, crafts a journey of resilience and creativity through his art. After an early spark of inspiration from Franz Marc's "The Yellow Cow," Clarke pursued and attained a BA honors degree in model making. Despite significant challenges, including the loss of his sight, Reynolds' fervor for artistic expression propelled him to innovate, using textiles and Braille to forge new paths of exploration in art through touch and sound.

"American Way Words" transcends a traditional art exhibition. It's an all-encompassing, interactive space that invites audiences to discover language and communication through tactile and visual experiences, embracing inclusivity and delight in exploration. A key feature of "American Way Words" is a life-size, playable Scrabble board. This installation is designed to be both accessible and enjoyable, using one-foot square tiles marked with color-coded Braille, allowing both sighted and visually impaired individuals to partake in the joy of language.

Batman is pictured to promote a DC Super Heroes exhibit at Exploration Place

Exploration Place

Exploration Place is open daily.

Jan. 26-May 5: “Bricktopia” is three exhibits in one! Million Brick Madness is a colossal 3,300 pounds of Lego - a literal 1 million bricks - to create an epic playground of imagination. Brick Dinos takes you into the Jurassic period to meet dinosaurs face to face, each one built by official Lego master artist Warren Elsmore. Adrift: Lost at Sea tells the fascinating story of what happened after 5 million Lego bricks spilled into the ocean from a cargo ship in 1997.

Jan. 26-May 5: “Skyscraper Science” a live science show of epic proportions! Marvel at the forces that shape city skylines, including the Epic Center, Wichita’s tallest building. See bricks get crushed in a 100-ton hydraulic press, watch a 400,000-volt lightning strike, experience a simulated earthquake, and implode a skyscraper.

May 24-Sept. 22: “DC Super Heroes: Discover Your Superpowers” – In this spectacular traveling exhibit, Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman need you to help them battle crime in the never-ending fight for truth and justice. Save the city, vie with villains, and work as a team to restore order across the DC Universe. In this immersive DC environment, you’ll explore the Hall of Justice, investigate robberies in Gotham City, hone your superhero skills in the S.T.A.R. Labs, and more. Along the way, you’ll also meet Cyborg, Aquaman, Green Lantern, The Flash, Supergirl, and Batgirl.

 Ongoing: “Kansas: An Immersive Dome Experience” – Don’t miss this 25-minute dome movie produced by the Exploration Place team in partnership with local drone videographers. Filmed completely by drone, consider this a love letter to Kansas showcasing the beauty and wonder of the Sunflower State in a way never seen before. It shows daily in the Digital Dome Theater, along with “The Dark Side of the Moon - Official Planetarium Show,” “The Arctic: Our Last Great Wilderness,” “Sea Monsters,” and “Beautifica.” Check the center’s website for screening times and tickets; attending a dome show does not require a museum admission ticket.

The Swamp Fox aircraft sits on display at the Doc B-29 Superfortress hangar

B-29 Doc Hangar, Education and Visitors Center

Hours vary at B-29 Doc Hangar, Education and Visitors Center. View the hangar’s schedule.

April 1-30: “Swamp Fox” – Wichita is home to one of only two airworthy Boeing B-29 Superfortress aircraft left in the world, “Doc.” In addition to seeing “Doc” and learning about its history, visitors to the B-29 Doc Hangar, Education and Visitors Center can get an up-close and first-hand look at “Swamp Fox,” a P-51 aircraft that underwent a complete restoration and was returned to flight in 2012. The P-51 “Swamp Fox” will be on display in the hangar through the month of April as part of the center’s WWII exhibit.

The aircraft was painted and named “Swamp Fox” in honor of Lt. Will Foard of the 364th Fighter Squadron, 357th Fighter Group, and 8th Air Force based out of Leiston, England during WWII. The present-day P-51 “Swamp Fox” served from 1945 until 1957 and was assigned to state-side patrol in California and Texas, serving as a trainer and a fighter. The P-51 Mustang built by North American Aviation served in both the European and Pacific Theaters of WWII and was a bomber escort for B-29s during bombing raids over Japan.

Being Modern exhibit

Wichita-Sedgwick Co. Historical Museum

The Wichita-Sedgwick Co. Historical Museum is open Tuesday through Sunday and offers free general admission from 1 to 5 p.m. every Sunday in 2024.

July 2-Aug. 6: “Small Expressions” – An annual juried exhibition showcasing contemporary small-scale works (not to exceed 15 inches in any direction) using fiber techniques in any media. Small in scale but visually compelling, the exhibit features work that speaks to the intricacy of expression, the intimacy of design, thoughtful communication, and visual excitement. A public reception will take place from 2 to 4 p.m. on July 14 at the museum. This exhibition was produced by the Handweavers Guild of America, Inc. and is made possible with support from the Fiber Trust.

Sept. 1-Oct. 5: “Thrift Style” – Organized by the Historic Costume and Textile Museum and the Marianna Kistler Beach Museum of Art, both at Kansas State University, this exhibition provides a nostalgic view into American ingenuity, sensibility, and optimism during a particularly challenging time of economic hardship and war – the period of the Great Depression and World War II.

Sept. 1-Oct. 5: “Thrift Finds: Thrifted Treasures from the Museum’s Collection” – Museums acquire objects in many ways, including purchases from thrift stores, promoting green practices, and encouraging the reuse of items. Created as a companion to “Thrift Style,” “Thrift Finds features thrifted treasures from the Museum’s Permanent Collection.

Ongoing

Through Dec. 2024: “Being Modern” – This exhibition follows (and is directly patterned after) the Museum’s previous exhibit, “Art Deco on the Plains.” It takes the timeline forward to explore modern design experienced locally in the 1950s and 1960s. It is a feature of the Lois Kay Walls Local Visual Art History Series.

Through Dec. 2024: “The Artistic Life and Work of Genevieve Frickel” – The work of local artist & teacher Genevieve Ingram Frickel is explored in this exhibit. Genevieve Ingram Frickel (1900-1985) was an independent visual artist and remarkable figure in the local art and culture scene of mid-century Wichita. Frickel led the Art Department at the Wichita School of Fine Arts before moving to Tucson, Arizona in 1953, where she exhibited her work and taught portrait and landscape painting. She returned to Wichita in the late 1950s and opened the Genevieve Frickel Art Studio. An influential teacher, many of Frickel’s students became professional artists.

CityArts Building Exterior

City Arts

March 1-April 14: “K-12 Spring Art Exhibit” – This exhibit will feature artwork created by students from Wichita Public Schools. Find it in the Main Gallery and Main Hall Gallery.

In the Balcony and Boardroom Galleries, view “The World as We See It.” This exhibition will feature works by female artists from Wichita. 

Blackbear Bosin is pictured wearing a suite jacket and bolo tie

Mid-America All-Indian Museum

Mid-America All-Indian Museum

May 4-June 21: “Following Blackbear: An Annual Invitation for Native Artists” – View this exhibition and buy one-of-a-kind original artworks created by Native artists from Wichita and surrounding areas.

Beginning June 29: “Jerome Tiger” – This exhibition features artwork created by Jerome Richard Tiger (1941-1967), an accomplished Muscogee Creek/Seminole artist from Oklahoma. He left behind a remarkable legacy through his prolific paintings. The Indian Museum takes great pride in showcasing his delicate, one-of-a-kind style of artwork. 

Through May 2024: “From the Vault” – Enjoy this curated exhibit of original works of art from the museum's unique collection and see two newly acquired works donated by the Michaelis family.

Through May 2024: “We Are the Spirit” – Come explore Kachinas through their ceremonies and physical representations. Learn about the Kachina season while viewing our unique collection on display. Kachinas are messengers between the human and spirit world. Human impersonators dance in Kachina ceremonies from winter solstice through mid-July. The dolls are made by Hopi people to teach children about spiritual beings.

An oil painting features a Native American man in tribal dress

Mark Arts

Mark Arts galleries are open and free to explore Tuesday through Saturday.
April 5-May 31: “Oil Painters of America National Exhibition and Convention” – Mark Arts will host the 33rd annual Oil Painters of America National Exhibition in the Youth Gallery. Oil Painters of America (OPA) is a prestigious organization that is dedicated to preserving and promoting excellence in representational art. This exhibition features 219 works by top oil painters from across North America. An opening reception will be held at 6 p.m. on April 5.

An image of a Black man features text "Making American Artists" an exhibit at Wichita Art Museum

Wichita Art Museum

The Wichita Art Museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. Admission to WAM is free all year round to everyone. Only special exhibitions will have a ticket price and those will be noted here.

Ongoing:

“THE BEAST, or Self Portrait” by Vanessa German – The artist calls this sculpture a “physical self-portrait” but also a “self-portrait of the soul, of the heart, a self-portrait of my own experience of being myself.”

“Artists on Artists” – The portraits in the exhibition share a curiosity about the people who make art. As each printmaker, photographer, and painter featured in the exhibit studied their subject, they raised questions about how an artist’s appearance might evoke something about their expressive spirit, interests, and impact on U.S. culture.

Through April 21: “Making American Artists: Stories from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, 1776-1976” – Wichita Art Museum's current traveling exhibit features American artists whose works have interpreted historical events, earned a place in American art history or influenced other artists during the two centuries after the U.S. gained its independence. WAM is the first stop of the exhibition’s two-year tour, which includes five other museums. Admission to see the special exhibition is $12 and free to WAM members, college students with an ID, and youth 18 and younger.

Through May 26, 2024: Prairies on Paper: Rural Kansas Through the Eyes of Printmakers and Photographers” – Drawing from the Emprise Bank and Wichita Art Museum collections, this exhibition considers questions such as, “How does where we live – or where we have lived, or where we come from – impact who we are?” Additionally, it offers a panorama of visual responses to the unique physical and cultural environment of Kansas over the past 140 years.

Through Aug. 11, 2024: “Upside Down, Topsy-Turvy and In-Between: Images of the Carnival and Circus from the Wichita Art Museum – This exhibition features images of the carnival and circus, what historians have called “the world between” and “the world standing on its head,” from the last century of American art.

Through April 7, 2024: “Country, City, Shore: America and Abroad in the Paintings of Guy C. Wiggins and Company”

Through March 23, 2025: “Coming of Age: Women Growing Older in American Art” – Presenting a sensitive and expansive vision of womanhood in the United States, the works in this exhibition demonstrate the ways that ageism both targets and overlooks women while celebrating the intersectionality of aging – a natural, inevitable part of life – in American art.

Through Dec. 20, 2025: “(im)permanent collection” – Visit again and again to experience this ever-changing exhibition. It features the museum’s prized permanent collection (more than 10,000 artworks the museum owns) – which is anything but permanent.

Through Oct. 23, 2027: “Confluence” – American impressionist Guy Carleton Wiggins and other artists interpret French painting styles to describe American environments.

A paiting features different sports jerseys

Ulrich Museum 

Ulrich Museum of Art at Wichita State University

The galleries at the Ulrich Museum of Art offer free admission. Spring semester exhibitions include:

Jan. 6-July 29: “The Flint Hills: A Tapestry of Color and Form” – Inspired by the Flint Hills of Kansas, this art installation aims to capture the stunning beauty and diversity of this unique and extraordinary landscape. The rolling hills and tallgrass prairie ecosystem of the Flint Hills offers a tapestry of color and form that is truly awe-inspiring. From the golden hues of the sun-drenched grasses to the bursts of color that come from wildflowers to the deep green of the tree stands found near the water on the prairie, the Flint Hills might be described as an understated riot of color and life, which this installation captures. Located in the West Flushing Gallery.

Jan. 25-June 8: “Urban Canvas | Exploring Muralism in Wichita” – Learn about the work of regional, national, and international artists who have contributed to urban art in Wichita. The exhibition is a celebration of creativity and a testament to the power of public art to transform and inspire. Whether you are a native Wichitan or a first-time visitor, this exhibit aims to entice an appreciation of the beauty and vitality of urban art. Find it in the Beren Gallery.

Jan. 25-June 15: “Fully Dimensional: Artists of the Outdoor Sculpture Collection” – Celebrate the artists of the Martin H. Bush Outdoor Sculpture Collection and explore their larger bodies of work. The exhibit will feature more than 90 pieces, combining selections from the Ulrich permanent collection and special works on loan to encourage deeper engagement with these multifaceted artists. Established in 1972, the Outdoor Sculpture Collection has become not only an integral part of the daily Wichita State University experience but has grown into a beloved cultural destination for art engagement. Located in the Amsden and Polk/Wilson Galleries.

Jan. 25-July 13: “The Ulrich Co-Lab” – A visitor-centered curatorial experiment, this exhibit encourages visitors to share their thoughts, feelings, and responses to the museum’s permanent collection. The goal is to create a feedback loop, revitalize the museum space, and represent a collective identity. Located in the Grafly Gallery. Phase 2 will be on display June 24-Sept. 7, 2024.

Jan. 25-Dec. 7, 2024: “Word, Thread and The Magnolia” – This is Ulrich’s first installation in the East Flushing Gallery, also known as the all-gender restroom on the right in the Ulrich Museum lobby. Created in 2023 by LabSynthE, this exhibit is constructed of vinyl, markers and prompts, leaves and resin, embroidered magnolia pods, custom paper towels, and embroidered fabric.

July 29-Dec. 7, 2024: “[RE]POSE: Leisure Bodies and Empowered Postures” – This exhibition reflects on the reinterpretation and transformation of the well-known art historical theme of the reclining figure, across the 20th and 21st centuries. Combining works from the Ulrich permanent collection with special works on loan, the exhibition brings together modern and contemporary works that, in dialogue, examine ideas of rest, leisure, and bodies in repose.

Aug. 26-Dec. 7, 2024: “Dream Machine: Fantasy, Surreality, and Play” – As part of Ulrich’s 50th Anniversary celebration, explore this exhibition, which brings together works from the permanent collection and special loans from around the U.S., for an exciting, interactive experience of the fantastical. 

Visit these pages to discover more about Wichita area museums and galleries. If you’re looking for other things to do in Wichita, check out our calendar of events and download the latest visitor guide for more inspiration.