In February, 1897, the art association of Kansas City opened a gallery to the public. The art gallery’s idea was conceived by William Rockhill Nelson, who presented the city a collection of reproductions of the old masters, for purposes of study. The reproduction of the greatest pictures of the old masters of the Italian, Spanish, Dutch, and Flemish schools were commissioned by the best copyists. Even the frames were reproduced. These paintings, together with an extensive collection of large carbon prints and a number of well selected casts were presented as a gift to the people of Kansas City in 1896.
William R. Nelson, built his residence called Oak Hall in 1888. The home, sheathed in stone, lied on a large tract of land south of 45th street and east of Oak Street. After it was demolished in the 1920s, the William Rockhill Nelson Gallery of Art and Mary Atkins Museum was constructed on the site. The gallery opened in 1933.
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, as it is known today, is open daily at 4525 Oak Street in Kansas City Missouri. I love this place, it is magnificent and filled with many, many works. A pleasant and free place to take the kids. Along each floor, a child’s guide is available. This guide has activities like matching or locating pictures of works of art found in a corridor or room. A child as young as three, can help find the picture hanging on the wall. My grandson and I enjoy this game.
Check out my blog for more art. “Secrets”