The Modern art collection includes paintings, sculptures and drawings representing Cubism, Expressionism, Fauvism, Dada, Surrealism, Bauhaus and Abstract Expressionism.

Thanks to the passionate support of a group of Kansas Citians who called themselves the Friends of Art, works by Ernst Barlach, Max Beckmann, Joseph Cornell, Juan Gris, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Paul Klee, Jacques Lipchitz, Roberto Matta Echaurren, Joan Miró, Ben Nicholson, Emil Nolde, Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock, Yves Tanguy and others entered the collection. Additional gifts came from individuals, including 10 outstanding works from playwright and native Kansan, William Inge. Among these were Abstract Expressionist paintings by Willem de Kooning, Philip Guston, Grace Hartigan and Robert Motherwell.

Recently, two Foundations have made additional transformative gifts to the modern collection. Through the Hall Family Foundation’s Modern Sculpture Initiative, 86 modern and contemporary sculptures entered the collection. Among them are magnificent modern works by Constantin Brancusi, Alexander Calder, Alberto Giacometti and Henry Moore. The William T. Kemper Foundation—Commerce Bank, Trustee has been similarly generous in support of modern acquisitions, among them iconic works by Marcel Duchamp, Adolph Gottlieb and Man Ray.