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Artists tried to help with Kansas suffrage memorial |

The Kansas Suffragist Memorial Committee (SMC) is currently seeking professional artists or artist teams to develop innovative and original art to incorporate as part of the new exhibit at the Kansas State Capitol building.

The Kansas Suffragist Memorial Committee grew out of the work of the League of Women Voters of Kansas (LWVK) and the Kansas American Association of University Women (AAUW), which formed to celebrate the centennial of the 19th Amendment. The goal of the SMC is to commemorate Kansas women who have made a statewide and/or national impact or prominence in achieving women’s right to vote. The art is meant to evoke inspiration about Kansas’ past, educate people about notable Kansas women, and pass on their values ​​to the next generation.

Receiving the Capitol Preservation Committee’s blessing for a suffragist memorial in 2021, the 2022 Kansas Legislature unanimously passed SB 479 authorizing a permanent memorial in the Kansas Capitol, and the governor signed the bill into law in April 2022.

Two possible locations on the first floor of the Kansas State Capitol for the placement of the art have been identified, both east of the rotunda. The artist or artist team has the option of placing the artwork on the plaster wall or creating a freestanding memorial for the corner of the area.

Interested artists should email the letter and required qualifications to [email protected] by February 15th. To review the full RFQ, visit kssuffragist.org.

The SMC, with assistance from artists identified by the Kansas Creative Arts Industries Commission, will evaluate applicants. The plan is to select three to five artists or groups of artists by March 15th. Those finalists will be given a stipend of $500 each to create their submissions for the Suffragist Memorial.

Senate Bill 479 also created a dedicated account under the Kansas Treasurer to receive donations to complete the Suffragist Memorial. The goal is to raise $125,000 by December 31st. All donations are tax deductible and will only go towards the creation, installation and maintenance of the memorial. Checks and credit cards are accepted for the memorial. The donation form is available on the Kansas Suffragist Memorial Facebook page.

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