kansas city museum
Thomas Hart Benton 125th Birthday
  thomas hart benton  

Celebrating Thomas Hart Benton’s 125th Birthday

Kansas City knows how to throw a birthday bash, and this year Kansas City’s cultural and artistic institutions are celebrating the birth of one of Kansas City’s treasured artists, Thomas Hart Benton. The Kansas City Museum will be celebrating Benton’s birth by displaying Benton lithographs from our collection as part of our Kansas City Canvas exhibit.

The Kansas City Canvas: Thomas Hart Benton and Beyond

Kansas City Canvas: Thomas Hart Benton and Beyond explored the artisan world of Thomas Hart Benton and Kansas City artists through the collection of the Kansas City Museum. As part of the 125th anniversary of Thomas Hart Benton’s birth, the Museum showcased the historical life and work of this amazing artist. The Museum displayed such lithograph prints as Forward Pass, Benton Home and more from our collection. The Museum, through the lens of history, explored works of art from several other KC artists including works from George Caleb Bingham, James Fitzgibbon, Daniel MacMorris and the WPA art of H.L. Pierre. Each piece was accompanied by an essay from museum staff, area historians and artists offering insights about the history, culture and art of their chosen piece.

See a Video Tour of the exhibit:

Several other institutions will host Benton activities throughout the year, including:


Thomas Hart Benton Home and Studio State Historic Site
3616 Belleview Ave. • Closed Tuesdays & Wednesdays
mostateparks.com/benton.htm • 816-931-5722
A trip to the home and studio of the painter, musician and writer offers a glimpse into how Benton lived and worked.

Friday, April 11 • 5–6 p.m
Tour the site and view a special work on loan before attending the Benton Bash at Kelly’s Westport Inn.

Sunday, April 27 • 2 p.m.
KCAI’s student-led GRUPPO performs a musical-theater work celebrating Benton’s life, art and music at his historic home courtyard.

November 26–December 31
Benton-designed, family Christmas cards are on display in home.

National World War I Museum at Liberty Memorial
100 W. 26th St.
theworldwar.org • 816-888-8100

April 19–October 12
Razzle Dazzle - Display telling the impact of Benton’s U.S. Naval experience in 1918 (as a camoufleur and draftsman) and how this influenced his development as an artist

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
4525 Oak St.
nelson-atkins.org • 816-751-1278

May 21–November 16
Benton in Black and White— Lithographs by Thomas Hart Benton
View a new exhibition of prints, enjoy old favorites from the museum’s permanent collection of Benton’s art, and visit the library for a Benton-related book display.

The Mattie-Rhodes Gallery
919 W. 17th St.

May 2 (First Friday)–August 8
A display showing the influence of the Mexican Social Realist School on Benton’s art and murals.

Kansas City Art Institute
4415 Warwick Blvd.

Sunday, April 13
KCAI designed birthday hat will adorn bronze sculpture of Benton.

April 1–30
Jannes Library and Learning Center, Benton Books & Photos Display

April 27
GRUPPO performs

Kelly’s Westport Inn
500 Westport Rd.

Friday, April 11 • 6–8 p.m.
Celebrate Tom’s birthday at the annual Benton Bash; raise a toast and have some birthday cake.




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