Barry Fitzgerald: In Between



January 30 through March 22, Wonder Fair celebrates the Fine Art of Illustration with In Between, a new suite of drawings by KU professor and industry veteran Barry Fitzgerald. 

In each work, an imperfect tree is the centerpiece of an unfolding parable or improbable event: an acorn dreams of the days its leaves will brush the clouds; a snake curls up with a good book in a pool of moonlight emanating from a hollow trunk. The split tree as leitmotif was inspired by the artist’s attachment to a three-story-high ancient oak tree in his yard, struck by an Oak Wilt disease diagnosed in Fall 2014 that ultimately resulted in the tree’s death and eventual removal in January 2015. Knowing this, in Fitzgerald’s new series of drawings, we can identify: 

sixteen original drawings,
and three newly-formed stumps (also original),
each very fine... 

and somehow infinite.

Before In Between:

Students of our history will recall that Wonder Fair was built with the visual language of Illustration as its cornerstone, under the guidance of 2008 KU Illustration graduate and Wonder Founder Eric Dobbins. 

Seven years later, Wonder Fair still champions all forms of art that are accessible but still demonstrate creative and conceptual rigor; promotes artists who possess a certain refreshing optimism that Art and Capital could fairly coexist (but who cannily recognize that they often do not). 

And so, it is with great excitement that we exhibit "In Between", a return, of sorts, to our earliest roots.

About the Artist: 

Barry Fitzgerald is a multi-disciplinary illustrator, artist and visual communicator who loves the challenge of making images that engage intellectually, emotionally, and aesthetically. He enjoys problem solving and collaborating with others, and is available for commissions.

After a previous career as a graphic designer in Washington, DC, Fitzgerald earned an MFA in illustration at SUNY Buffalo where he studied under Hall of Fame illustrator Alan E. Cober. Upon graduation, he was hired by the Detroit New to work as a staff artist, where he was able to combine his love of graphic design, illustration, and visual communication. Currently, Fitzgerald is a Professor of Illustration at the University of Kansas. He has been teaching illustration, drawing, painting, and conceptual problem solving since 1993.

Barry has received over 100 national and international awards for his work, including American Illustration, the Society of Illustrators of NY, Society of Illustrators of LA, 3X3 Magazine, Creative Quarterly, and Print Magazine. He has also been included in ‘200 Best Illustrators Worldwide’ published by Lürzer’s Archive.

Frank & Stein, Inc.

Wonder Fair Ghost Town part III: Frank & Stein Inc.


Halloween night, Kansas City artists Dustin Williams and Jon Linn unveil their third installment of the ongoing Ghost Town series. Each October at Wonder Fair, nondescript hallways and dusty back rooms are inexplicably transformed into suspiciously spooky new businesses. In the wake of 2012's Cemetery Cinema, the haunted video rental store, and 2013's Dead End Diner (see our grave reviews on Yelp), comes a new installation and a new business/membership card to add to your wallet. 


Daria Tessler: World Without Us

Daria Tessler: World Without Us


Longtime Wonder Fair favorite Daria Tessler will be our featured artist in the gallery September 26-October 26, displaying original watercolors that expand upon her super-saturated, hyper-strange screen-printed universe. Tessler’s work illustrates her whimsical answer to one of humankind’s most vain and vulnerable questions: what will become of the “World Without Us,” when humans no longer roam and excessively zone the earth? In Tessler’s view, an ecosystem of abandoned plastics and unchecked natural growth will become the fantastical infrastructure of a wondrous new society.

An illustrator, prolific printmaker, and voracious consumer of sci-fi/fantasy books and science podcasts, Tessler is always finding new ways to press against the elastic boundary that divides creatures of pure fantasy from those that are stranger than fiction. We invite you to join us this October to enjoy a rare opportunity to see Tessler’s original watercolors, which often serve as the inspiration for her more widely-known and highly affordable screenprints. 

About the Artist:
Born in Finland and raised in Los Angeles, Daria Tessler currently lives in Portland, Oregon where she draws and screenprints characters of all shapes and sizes who adventure through jumbled, mysterious worlds.


Jenny Harp: Comprehensions and Shifts in Matter

Jenny Harp: Comprehensions and Shifts in Matter


Jenny Harp, winner of Wonder Fair's 2013 Print Invitational, returns to Lawrence this August with a new body of work synthesizing the realms of traditional and digital printmaking.

The artist explains: 
"I remember the day my dad brought home our first computer. From that point forward my time was split between exploring nature and exploring a new digital world beyond the screen. My current work focuses on interactions and collaborations with the computer. In a quasi-scientific fashion I build, investigate, collect and archive virtual worlds using traditional print methods and digital media.

Rough Comprehensions and Shifts in Matter weaves together matrix-based information systems-both analog and digital. A merging of past and future creates a semi-fictional and experimental universe that emerges bit by bit."

About the Artist:

A native of Northern California, Jenny currently lives and works in Iowa City Iowa, where she is an MFA candidate at the University of Iowa. When not making prints or creating alternate digital universes, she can be found building forts, baking or throwing sticks for her dog Oscar. 

YWAs: Young Woman Artists



The name Young Woman Artists (YWAs) is inspired by another group of young artists, the Young British Artists (YBAs) who rose to prominence in the 1990s and were, like most co-ed art movements, a bit of a sausage fest.

By intentional contrast, Our YWAs exhibition was inspired by recent events in the art world and our American culture at large; women's health issues were inciting fierce debate in state houses and the white house, public opinion about the gender pay gap was flooding my news feed, and most specifically, I was troubled by a nagging sensation that whenever I saw art shows locally that the majority of work I encountered (especially in solo exhibitions) was made by cisgender male artists, and most of the outgoing artists submitting work to Wonder Fair were men. I looked inward and outward to consider how pernicious this trend might be on my own turf and in our local culture. In conversation with my friend and fellow feminist Art Historian Paula Rose, I learned that a similar tallying project was already underway in LA, and was spreading fast (and girl, was it awesome).

Like Gallery Tally artist Micol Hebron and the Guerrilla Girls before her, we feel it doesn't make much sense for successful artists to overwhelmingly be cisgender males; over time, we hope to not only address this gender gap issue by exhibiting more women artists, more thoughtfully in our own gallery, but we'll also look carefully at the recent history of other local galleries to determine if the KC metro area's creative gender gap is as wide as it appears to be elsewhere in America.

Our initial goal is modest; to mount an exhibition of exceptional woman artists whose talents dwarf their exposure in the local art scene. Eventually, however, we hope to publish the results of our KC/Lawrence gender gap survey along with related original essays both online and in print, in a catalog that will commemorate the first YWAs exhibition. Our online catalog, we hope, will become a resource for women artists and scholars of feminist art history interested in connecting, sharing influence, and increasing opportunities for all artists and arts organizers.

Justin Marable: Waste Not Mystics

On View April 25–June 22, 2014

Topeka-based printmaker Justin Marable presents Waste Not Mystics. This show is fantastic, both in content and execution: in a series of colorful screenprints, Marable tells the story of a mythic herd of unicorns reclaiming the Kansas prairie from an insidious oil magnate. Their revolutionary weapons of choice? Rainbows and stardust, of course. Waste Not Mystics is a classic Marable exhibition enhanced by a hint of Henry Darger's folkloric zeal.

Available Works: 

please inquire with gallery

Jonathan Metzger: Where I'm From, Where I Want To Be

On View March 28–April 22, 2014

Working in various media, Jonathan Metzger is a young, mid-western man searching for a place. Growing up on the bluffs near the Mississippi River in southern Minnesota, Metzger spent his youth on his parent’s farm. Memories of building fences, raising pole sheds, and completing household chores inspire his current work. Jonathan Metzger received his MFA with honors from University of Kansas in spring of 2013. Currently, Metzger is a visiting assistant professor at Millsaps College in Jackson, MS.

In his newest body of work, anthropomorphized hammers and tea cups borrowed from memories of his father’s work shed or his mother’s kitchen become monlithic portrait subjects.

See the photo archive of this exhibition

Available Works: 

please inquire with gallery