Art in the Loop Returns to Downtown

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SlinkyBall by Denise DiPiazzo will be installed in West Terrace (Case) Park as part of this year's Art in the Loop. (Image from Downtown Council)

By Kim Mueller

Be prepared to play in the city this summer when art comes alive in the park, library, streetcar and studios as part of the 2018 Art in the Loop project.

“We look forward to this year being the biggest and boldest yet,” said Donna Mandelbaum, KC Steetcar Authority communications director.

Art in the Loop 2018 will include knitting a sweater around a streetcar shelter, wrapping colorful vinyl on a streetcar exterior, and floating a clothing collage on a streetcar ceiling.

Performances will pop up throughout the line, including strolling musicians, interactive dancers and Stone Lion Puppets.

But the streetcar isn’t the only place art will come to the people during downtown’s fifth Art in the Loop project.

Local artists also will create temporary exhibits in four other locations: West Terrace (Case) Park at 10th & Jefferson streets, Kansas City Public Library Central at 14 W. 10th Street, and The Box Gallery and Arcade which are both located on the first floor of the Commerce Bank building at 1000 Walnut Street.

Celestial Heap by Monica Dixon. (Image from Downtown Council)

This year’s theme is “KC Plays.”

“Play is evident at the base of every truly creative expression,” artists and musicians applying for this year’s project were told.

And the response was amazing, said Ann Holliday, Art in the Loop’s program director. Ninety entries were submitted for only 15 spots compared to the project’s first year when only two dozen artists applied.

The public can meet the winners Tuesday from 6:30 – 8:30 pm at the Downtown Kansas City Public Library where local artists and musicians will discuss their concepts.

The actual art doesn’t start, however, until noon on May 30 with a concert from The Sextet in West Terrace Park, and an opening reception from 11:30 am – 1 pm on June 1 at The Box Gallery.

The Box Gallery also will host exhibits from June through July when visitors can view art project images, listen to music performances and pick up maps and brochures for Art in the Loop.

The play continues a couple blocks north at West Terrace (Case) Park where curious adults and children can enjoy a giant Busy Bead Maze, a kinetic steel kite sculpture, kite decorating, and a large-scale Slinky Ball installation.

Musicians and poets also will entertain near at the park at The Wednesday Lunchtime Concert series from 11:30 am-1:30 pm from May 30 to September 5.

More information about the project, the artists and performance schedule can be found here.

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