"Behind the Exhibits" Lecture Series 

Join us as featured speakers dive deeper into our two spring exhibits, Framed: Step into Art™ and Storyland: A Trip Through Childhood Favorites™.  Behind the Exhibits lectures are FREE and open to the public. Lectures take place inside the Flint Hill Discovery Center's second floor classroom.
Behind the Exhibit Lectures

Animals into Art

Panel Discussion | Thursday, February 21 from 6:30-7:30 PM
Join the Flint Hills Discovery Center and Strecker Nelson West Gallery as we explore the art of wildlife. This curated panel discussion will put three artists in conversation about the joys and challenges of translating wildlife into different mediums. Artists will share their techniques and stories of making the natural world come alive in paint, pottery, and photography. The discussion will be led by gallery owner Alyn Pennington West with time for public questions.

  • Susan Rose - Susan’s drawings and paintings are inspired by the beauty of the prairie, the sky, and the creatures that call it home.  Her primary media are acrylic, watercolor, and oils, and she works on location or from her own photographs.
  • Brian Horsch - Brian has been creating hand built and thrown ceramic sculpture since 2008. His work tends to focus on human and animal forms, both real and imagined. Many of his pieces are functional with human or animal accents, while others are purely decorative.
  • David Rintoul - Dave is a retired KSU biologist and has been photographing landscapes and wildlife for many years. He is particularly drawn to the challenges of photographing birds, whose beauty and ability to fly have been inspiring artists for many centuries.

The Legend of Johnny Kaw

Panel Discussion | Thursday, March 21 from 6:30-7:30 PM
He's big. He's tall. He's Johnny Kaw! Dive deeper into this Kansas legend with four local experts. We'll discuss the history of the mythic American figure, the local Manhattan connection and the future of Johnny Kaw. Come prepared for a lively discussion on Kansas' very own tall tale. The panel discussion will end with audience questions.

  • Cheryl Collins - Director of the Riley County Historical Society
  • Naomi Wood - Professor of English at Kansas State University specializing in children's and young adult literature, fantasy and fairy tales and Victorian studies.
  • Karen Hibbard - Director of the Manhattan Convention and Visitors Bureau
  • Ed Klimek - Former Manhattan Mayor and founder of the Friends of Johnny Kaw

Framed: Step into Art Gallery Tour

with Jay Nelson | Thursday, April 18 from 6:30-7:30 PM
Get the insider scoop on the art and artists featured in our spring exhibit Framed: Step into Art. Local art curator Jay Nelson will lead a gallery tour focusing on the featured artists: John Singer Sargent, Diego Rivera, Grant Wood and Clementine Hunter. Learn the secrets behind the paintings and the importance of art for young minds.

Jay Nelson is an art curator and former owner of the Strecker Nelson Gallery (now Strecker Nelson West Gallery).