Press Release: The Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art explores the meaning of ‘belonging’ in the new year


ST. JOSEPH, MO – January 4, 2022—The Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art is pleased to announce two upcoming exhibitions to ring in the new year. Returning/Belonging features artwork by Kansas City-based artists Benjamin Parks and Kathy Liao. The 48th annual Membership Exhibition will return in 2022. Artists of all ages who are members of the Albrecht-Kemper are invited to show their work in this juried exhibition.

An opening reception for both of these exhibitions will be held on Friday, January 14, 2022 from 4:00 to 7:00 pm. An awards ceremony will take place the same evening at 6:00 pm to announce the winners in the Membership Exhibition. Opening receptions are free and open to the public. A cash bar and light refreshments will be available. Attendees are requested to wear face masks while not actively eating and drinking.

Returning/Belonging is an exhibition featuring monumental, large-scale artworks by Kansas City- based artists Benjamin Parks and Kathy Liao.

Ben Parks with his artwork Mike
  • Benjamin Parks was born in Fairfax, Missouri and creates music, performances, illustrations, interactive installations, printmaking and sculpture. His primary focus is painting large-scale portraits and figurative work and most recently has shown his work in galleries and art spaces throughout the country, including the Leedy Voulkous Art Center, the Foundry Arts Centre, the Lawrence Arts Center, and the Cee Flat Gallery in Brooklyn, NY.
  • Kathy Liao was born in Taipei, Taiwan and most recently was named the Artist iNC Program Specialist with the Mid-America Arts Alliance in Kansas City. Prior to 2020, she served as an Associate Professor of Art and Director of Painting and Printmaking at Missouri Western State University in St. Joseph, MO. When speaking of her motivation and common themes throughout her artwork, Liao states, “I look for patterns and repetitions in behaviors of the immigrant family. As families separate and migrate, I recognize the invariable loss and the struggle to justify and reconcile the distance in between.”

Returning/Belonging will be on view at the Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art Saturday, January 15 through Saturday, April 16, 2022.

The 48th annual Membership Exhibition is a tradition at the Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art that celebrates the value of artists and creators in our community and gives them the opportunity see their artwork represented in a nationally accredited art museum. In past years, participating artists in the Membership Exhibition have ranged in age from 9 to 90 years old. Artworks are divided into ten categories and are evaluated on technique, composition, and aesthetic appeal by a panel of adjudicators from the St. Joseph arts community.

The 48th annual Membership Exhibition will be on view at the Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art Saturday, January 15 through Sunday, February 20, 2022. Membership information is available at

Please note: The AKMA will continue to monitor local weather conditions as well as health and safety guidelines at the state and national levels and may choose to announce the Membership Exhibition winners with a virtual ceremony. Please visit for additional information.

The Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art aims to enrich the community through the collection and exhibition of visual arts by providing education, creating unique experiences, and promoting regional artists. Admission is $5 for adults, $2 for seniors, and $1 for students. Museum members and children under age 6 are free. To become a member, visit For more information about the exhibitions, call 816-233-7003.

About AKMA: A work of art itself, the Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art houses one of the finest collections of American Art from the 18th century to the present.  The former William Albrecht home provides the perfect backdrop for works by pioneering artists including Mary Cassatt, Thomas Hart Benton, Gilbert Stuart and Jaune Quick-to-See Smith.  A wide variety of special programs complement the museum’s collection, including temporary exhibitions, art classes, gallery talks, and special events.


Media Inquiries:

Jill Carlson

Marketing & Communications Manager

(816) 233-7003 Ext. 308

Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art

2818 Frederick Ave.

Saint Joseph, MO 64506

Quick Links:

For more information about these exhibitions, call 816-233-7003 or visit:

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *