LEAP program Celebrates Diverse Talents

Jul 9, 2020

CONTACT: Melissa Beltrame, Chief Marketing Officer
Jenny Kincaid Julian, Socialworx PR
(816) 550.4382 | jenny@socialworxpr.com


KANSAS CITY, MO) July 2020  Lead Bank announced today its 2020-2021 Lead Emerging Artist Prize (LEAP) recipients. Longtime supporters of the Kansas City Art Institute (KCAI) and its Sponsored Studio Program, the Bank created the Lead Bank Emerging Artist Prize in 2018 as a benefit to the community. The 2020-2021 LEAP awards were recently given to the following four KCAI art students: Ryan Haney of Miami, FL; Stella Bonifazi of Tulsa, OK; London Williams of Milwaukee, WI; and Hung Le of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Recognizing the diverse talents each student holds, from imaginative sculpting and captivating photography to the exploration of mainstream topics through fabric, each student has shown his or her expertise through hands-on expression. Their work can be viewed on the following webpage: https://lead.bank/lead-emerging-artist-prize

Each year, Lead Bank features the recipient’s artwork on the Bank’s Community Art Panels located in their Crossroads branch parking lot. These panels were constructed specifically for the community to enjoy the artists' works throughout the year. The four Emerging Artists’ artwork will be featured as a 2D mural on the Community Art Wall located at the Crossroads bank location (1801 Main Street) with the original artwork displayed inside the bank lobby.

"We are thrilled to welcome another group of talented artists to Lead Bank. Each artist’s exhibit has been very well received by the community. It is a privilege for the Bank to be able to display and enjoy such a fantastic treat each quarter," said Josh Rowland, CEO, and vice-chairman of Lead Bank. Each award winner received a $500 scholarship and the nominating KCAI department will receive $200. The community is invited to view the works of art beginning later this summer with sculptures from Ryan Haney’s Towards an End on exhibit.

Students were nominated by KCAI faculty and chosen based on academic achievement. They have current works on display and those who demonstrate a focused commitment to their contemporary art practice. The Lead Bank Emerging Artist Selection Committee includes Kim Weinberger, Linda Lighton, Peregrine Honig, Susan Lordi-Marker, and Joshua Rowland. The selection committee chose four works out of 27 finalists based on faculty recommendations.
“We have continued to support the Kansas City Art Institute and its programs because it’s just one more way that we can engage with our community. Working with young artists who have diverse backgrounds and a different perspective of the world around us, especially our community, is refreshing. They give us hope for the future and we’re very excited to support their creative talents,” says Joshua Rowland, CEO of Lead Bank. For the past four years, the Bank has hosted several artists for First Fridays, displayed artwork in their Crossroads branch, and hosted the annual Road Roller printmaking event each year put on by the KCAI Printmaking Studio’s students. 

About Lead Bank
Lead Bank is a community-minded, independent commercial bank, recognized for its innovative approach to community banking and unique banking solutions that allows real people, real businesses, and their communities to thrive. Serving communities with treasury management and lending services, consumer client products, digital consumer banking, and innovative financial technology services, Lead Bank is the first choice for those looking for a future banking partner. Headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri, yet serving clients digitally throughout the United States, Lead Bank is known for being a small business advocate, having outstanding client service, and creating financial pathways to those, who in the past, have been unbankable. 2020 member of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV), an international network of banking leaders from around the world committed to advancing positive change in the banking sector. For additional information, call (816) 220.8600 or visit http://www.lead.bank/

About Kansas City Art Institute
Kansas City Art Institute (KCAI) is a college of art and design awarding a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 13 majors. Founded in 1885, it is Kansas City’s oldest arts institution. KCAI’s mission is to prepare gifted students to transform the world creatively through art and design. Learn more at www.kcai.edu or follow us on Twitter: @KCArtInstitute, on Facebook, and Instagram at KCArtInstitute. 


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