To the docent website!

Happy New Year docents!

We would like to thank all of you for your amazing work and dedication during 2020! We are excited for another year of great work, conversation and progress!

Our first meeting is Feb. 4th 

As we get closer to the start of the SP 2021 semester, updates to the calendar and any other new documents will be added to this site.

Whether you are new to the Spencer, or returning, welcome! We are so excited to start another year of welcoming, educating, meeting, and bonding with the KU and greater Lawrence communities.


We hope that this website will be beneficial to you. It serves as an docent HQ of sorts, a place where you can sign up for tours, stay up to date with the events and happenings at the Spencer, as well as a place to continue learning yourself.  We have the docent handbook, a photo gallery of current and upcoming shows and docent group pictures. There are past and current newsletters and docent directories, plus training notes, and extra readings to keep you knowledgeable on the evolving museum world.

As said before, we are excited for this new year and to see what's in store!

-- SMA Education

What is the Spencer Museum of Art?

            In the Helen Foresman Spencer Museum of Art, the University of Kansas and the entire region have a new home for old masters. A significant number of the University’s art treasures have been hidden from view for many years, stored elsewhere on campus, because the former museum could not safely accommodate them. Now the distinguished collection of more than 37,000 pieces is housed in this splendid building that permits their preservation, exhibition, and study.

            The Spencer Museum of Art, with 90,000 square feet of floor space, provides a consolidated facility for the study of our artistic heritage. It has already been recognized as one of the best teaching museums in the country. The museum’s holdings, drawn from around the globe, are exhibited and studied in spacious galleries and teaching areas. The building’s center court, auditorium, classrooms, and seminar rooms are equipped for the presentation of lectures, films, slides, and special events appropriate to educational programs and art exhibitions. The storage and exhibit preparation areas have been carefully planned to facilitate the care and handling of artworks, while temperature and humidity controls and a sophisticated security system ensure the safety of the collection.

            The Museum of Art is a fitting companion to the Kenneth A. Spencer Research Library located only a short distance away. Both buildings, designed by Robert Jenks of Kansas City and finished with white Indiana limestone, contribute significantly to the intellectual life of the University community. The generosity of Helen Foresman Spencer, who made these buildings possible, is unsurpassed in the history of the University of Kansas.

            In the great tradition of private benefactions for the arts and education, Helen Foresman Spencer stands out for her support of the arts and education. Generations of students, faculty members, and visitors will find pleasure, educational challenges, and a deepened love of beauty in this marvelous place.