Special Exhibits

1st Floor –

Windows on Collections – Show Posters from the Museum’s Collection

Special exhibit located at the Museum’s Main Street Entrance from July 15 through September 14, 2014 .  Until recently, the “Show Poster” was an essential form of advertising for public events. The Museum has recently acquired a large collection of these posters which capture the local entertainment scene in mid-20th century Wichita in colorful and compelling detail.

2nd Floor –

The 75th Anniversary Exhibit

This year marks the 75th Anniversary of the Museum. With a mission to collect, preserve and educate through the interpretation of a unique collection of artifacts representing our local history, Museum staff has generated an endless variety of exhibits through the years. Museums tell stories through artifacts – material culture bearing tangible evidence of the past. The Museum has pulled out the stops for this exhibit; instead of using artifacts as a means to tell a story, this exhibit focuses on the artifacts themselves. Here you learn the history of the Historical Museum and enjoy an impressive range of seldom-seen artifacts from the Museum’s permanent collection. You will find these exhibited throughout the Museum, on all four floors.

In departure from customary exhibits, the Museum challenges visitors to identify artifacts. What are they and why are they in the Museum’s collection? Imagine the stories they might tell about local history. Have fun and submit your conclusions to the Museum by mail or by email to wschm@wichitahistory.org for recognition and prizes to be presented in September this year when the Museum publishes outcomes and reveals the actual stories behind the artifacts.

3rd Floor –

Wichita’s Modern Art Galleries of Mid-Century

Wichita, Kansas emerged as an American art center by the 1920′s as citizens organized to make visual art part of everyday life. By the 1950′s, Wichita’s avant garde abstract artists set up galleries of their own in downtown Wichita – first the indeX Gallery and then the Bottega Gallery. Join us at the Museum in the Lois Kay Walls Gallery (3rd Floor West Gallery) to learn more about the art and the artists who opened new artistic territory.

Artists included in the exhibit are Enrique Riveron, Robert M. Kiskadden, David E. Bernard, Rex Hall, Paul ‘Pablo’ Edwards, David W. Cale, James G. Davis, Eugene ‘Skip’ Harwick and Bruce McGrew.

4th Floor –

National Touring Exhibition: “House & Home”

What makes a house a home? Throughout American history, people have lived in all sorts of places, from military barracks and two-story colonials to college dormitories and row houses. House & Home, a new exhibition opening June 14, 2014, embarks on a tour of houses both familiar and surprising, through past and present, to explore the varied history, and many cultural meanings of the American home.

Drawn from the flagship installation at The National Building Museum, House & Home explores how our ideal of the perfect house and our experience of what it means to “be at home” have changed over time. Visitors will learn about issues of housing inequality, land distribution and the role of the government, from the Colonial period through the Homestead Act and the creation of the Federal Housing Administration in the 1930s.

Featured films, construction materials, domestic artifacts and photographs immerse viewers in how transformations in technology, government policy and consumer culture have impacted American domestic life. Related sections of House & Home look outward, exploring the relationship of the individual house to the larger society by presenting examples of contemporary community development through the film.

The House & Home exhibit will run through August 10, 2014



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