The Brantman Patrons Gallery
“The goal was to create a proper environment for the students to have their work on display, as well as to exhibit the work of professional artists in the community.”
– Greg Brantman, Head of the Arts Department, SMN
Dr. Don Wilson was the principal at Shawnee Mission North High School in 1978, and he had a question: If there were special facilities for sports teams – stadiums, courts, pools, etc. and a theater for drama students, Why couldn’t there be a space for artists to show their work?
Greg Brantman, the ceramics and jewelry teacher, who later became the head of the Arts Department and legendary sculpture teacher, created a vision of the space and, Meg Cross, a talented and tireless community volunteer, made the space a reality. Mrs. Cross enlisted the support of over 400 patrons, including the Governor of Kansas, Muriel Kauffmann, J.E. Dunn Construction, J.C. Nichols Company and United Telecommunications (Sprint), who donated time, money and expertise to create the Patrons Gallery.
Now called the Brantman Patrons Gallery, it still serves North students and the Kansas City community. Professional artists show in the gallery each year and work alongside students in their classrooms. In 2021-2022, the space was refurbished with a glass front wall so the artwork could be seen and the entire gallery was brought up to date. Fundraising has begun to establish an art scholarship fund for North art seniors. We have purchased over 50 art works from students to form a permanent collection. Over 30 students have received scholarships for summer art enrichment classes at the KC Art Institute. We have funded student trips to see exhibits at the Nelson-Atkins Art Museum, some attending a museum for the first time.
We are proud to continue the enrichment and support the artistic growth of North art students.