The Kansas Suffragist Memorial Committee (SMC) is seeking professional artists or artist teams to develop innovative, original art to be incorporated as part of the new display at the Kansas State Capitol building. A dedicated website is under construction at: kssuffragist.org.
The Kansas Suffragist Memorial Committee grew from 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 SMC ‘s goal is to commemorate the Kansas women who had statewide and/or national impact or importance in achieving women’s right to vote. It is the wish that this public art evoke inspiration about our Kansas past, educate people about important Kansas women, and pass on our values to the next generation.
After obtaining the blessing of the Capitol Preservation Committee 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 in April 2022.
Two possible locations have been identified on the first floor for placement of the art, 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 submit the requested letter and qualifications via email by February 15, 2023. The SMC, with the assistance of artists identified by the Kansas Creative Arts Industries Commission, will evaluate the applicants, planning on selecting three to five artists or artist teams by March 15, 2023. Those finalists will be given a stipend of $500 each to create their proposals 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 at least $110.000. All donations are tax-deductible and will go only to 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 page.
The League of Women Voters of Kansas is a nonpartisan, grassroots, volunteer political organization with nine local Leagues and at-large members across the state. LWVK encourages the informed and active
participation of citizens in government and influences public policy through education and advocacy. The League never endorses candidates or parties.