Exhibit Policy

Public exhibits are a valuable part of UMKC Libraries’ public services outreach. They entertain, inform, educate, and, at times, promote the Libraries’ information resources and services. Exhibits provide an excellent opportunity for the Libraries to engage in collaborative projects, especially with faculty members and others in the university community.

This policy defines the philosophy and goals for public exhibits throughout the Libraries, identifies responsibility for these programs, and defines acceptance guidelines and general policies. Libraries staff involved in organizing, curating, and/or mounting exhibits are deemed to be acting within the course of official duties and under the authority of the University Libraries of the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

The display of public art is an important part of providing welcoming and pleasant facilities and enriches the Libraries’ service and outreach programs. The Libraries’ permanent art collection is not covered by this policy. For information about the Libraries Public Art Policy, contact the UMKC Libraries Administrative Office at umkcula@umkc.edu.

The Dean of University Libraries will be responsible for updating and revising this policy.


  • Nourish intellectual, aesthetic, and creative growth
  • Educate the university community on particular topics
  • Enhance the strategic mission and development goals of the library
  • Support university and/or library events, programs, symposia, activities, and accomplishments
  • Promote university and community relations
  • Recognize library supporters, friends, and donors

Criteria for Selection

Exhibits in the Libraries are selected with reference to the Exhibits Policy and Goals Statements. Exhibit spaces are available, in accordance with these Guidelines, to University and University-related departments, groups, and organizations, to student organizations registered with the UMKC Student Life Office, and to exhibitors sponsored by the Libraries.

The following criteria apply to exhibit proposal considerations, although not all exhibits will meet all criteria. The Libraries reserve the right to approve or reject all exhibit requests, to have final approval for the layout of the exhibit, and to make all decisions regarding length of exhibit duration, placement of the exhibit within a library, and content of publicity:

  • Educational content ranging from advanced scholarly contributions to general informational value
  • Relevance to library collections
  • Broadness of appeal of the main theme
  • Appropriateness of subject, technique, and style for intended location and audience
  • Appropriateness to special events, anniversaries, holidays, etc.
  • Relation to other events or exhibits in the community
  • Representation of an influential movement, genre, trend, or national culture
  • When the topic is controversial, an objective presentation is required
  • Does not promote the partisan political, religious, or social doctrines of any single person or group
  • Reflects vitality, originality, artistic expression, and experimentation
  • Does not promote the financial profit of any individual, organization, or commercial enterprise
  • Ease and cost of installation
  • Satisfies public safety considerations, e.g. free standing displays, hands-on exhibits, etc.
  • Exhibitor agrees to sign an exhibit release form with the Libraries

Exhibit Proposal Process and Forms

  1. Exhibitor reads the University Libraries Exhibits Guideline.
  2. Exhibitor identifies an open timeframe for the event via the consultation with the Libraries’ Administrative Office. See Exhibit Location, Description, and Use.
  3. Exhibitor completes the Exhibits Proposal Form (PDF), prints, signs, and sends copy of the proposal to the UMKC Libraries Administrative Office at umkcula@umkc.edu.
  4. The Libraries Administrative Office approves or rejects proposal in a timely manner, based on the Exhibit Criteria for Selection and/or schedule. Exhibitor is contacted with result. 
  5. If approved, the exhibit is added to the Libraries’ calendar.
  6. Prior to exhibit installation, the Exhibit Release Form (PDF) is signed by Libraries exhibitor, sponsor, and contact. 
  7. Exhibit Proposal and Exhibit Release forms are retained in the Libraries’ administrative office. 

Exhibit Location, Description, and Use

There is one designated space in Miller Nichols Library designed specifically for exhibition: the Link Gallery, located on the Ground Floor as a connector to the Miller Nichols Learning Center. Suggestions for exhibits and displays in other spaces within Miller Nichols Library and the Health Sciences Library are welcome. The Dean of Libraries has delegated to the Libraries’ Programs and Exhibits Team the authority to approve exhibits on behalf of the Dean of University Libraries.

Link Gallery
The Link Gallery
  • Open gallery space in prime location on the Ground floor of Miller Nichols Library
  • Gypsum sheet-rock wall (Wall dimensions: 40’ long x 9’ 5” high)
  • glass-topped display cases for use as needed (Case dimensions: 5’ long x 30” wide x 9” high sitting atop 3’ legs)
  • No track lighting over the wall display
  • Limited electrical access
  • Exhibits may not impede traffic flow in the surrounding space
  • Available during library hours

Space not specifically designated for exhibits, such as corridors or study areas, may be considered for a temporary, special exhibit. To inquire about this type of space, contact the Libraries’ Administrative Office. 


Exhibitors are solely responsible for funding all costs associated with the exhibit, including but not limited to shipping, installation, dismantling, insurance, and reception. Exhibitors are responsible for publicity beyond that provided by the Libraries. See the publicity section of this document for more information.

Security and Insurance

Exhibits are often located in high traffic areas whose visibility reduces the likelihood of damage or theft of materials; however, UMKC Libraries takes no responsibility for the security or welfare of exhibits at any time, including during transport, installation, or dismantling. Before installing an exhibit, exhibitors and the Libraries representative must sign a release, indemnifying UMKC from any responsibility for loss or damage. The original signed Exhibit Release Form will be retained in the unit. A copy of the Form will be sent to the Office of the Dean of University Libraries.

Insurance coverage, if needed, is the responsibility of the Exhibitor. 


Exhibits must be placed so as to accommodate physical safety considerations. There cannot be loose cords or cabling, freestanding units must be secure, and ease of egress from the exhibit for emergency purposes must be assured. The exhibits must be set up so as to accommodate disability access. 

Best Practices

Exhibits must be well prepared, organized, and aesthetically pleasing. In order to most effectively promote a Libraries exhibit, it is encouraged that each exhibit space is scheduled for at least 1 semester. 

Exhibit Duration: Exhibits should have specific start and end dates, although the end date may be extended if the schedule allows. As a general rule, exhibits should be on display for an entire semester (three to four months), but shorter exhibit times are permissible.

Exhibit Text/Labels: Text should be word processed and printed on a high quality printer if not professionally designed and/or typeset.

  • Introductory panels and captions for individual items should be included with all exhibits
  • Typeface should be a legible font such as Times New Roman, Century, or Arial
  • Text should have contrast, such as black on white.
  • Font size should be at least 28 point for introductory text panels. For secondary text panels, 18 point is acceptable if the reader can be within 20 inches. For text that only contains a few lines of copy, 14 point is acceptable.

Exhibit Support Materials

  • Bios, brochures and other promotional material and/or instructional materials to accompany an exhibit are optional, and must be provided by the exhibitor.
  • Exhibitors are invited to create an accompanying website to be linked to from the Libraries’ website’s News and Events page. When applicable, exhibitors are responsible for preparing the content of the publications associated with their exhibit. Examples include: a bibliographical list of items displayed; a double sided brochure; an exhibit catalog.


  • For information to be placed on the News and Events page, send copies of the approved proposal to the Libraries’ administrative office, along with an image.
  • Flyers, posters, and handbills should contain consistent messages and should present the Libraries official logo. The Libraries’ administrative office is available for consultation in the creation of flyers, posters, and handbills.
  • The Libraries’ administrative office is also available for advice on media contacts.

Rooms and areas in the Libraries may be, on occasion, available for receptions and other activities (workshops, talks, demonstrations) linked to exhibits. These should be discussed with the Libraries’ administrative office, who will consult the room use policy and check the schedule to see whether a reception or other activity can be held. Cost of reception is to be solely covered by exhibitor.

Dispute Resolution

The UMKC Libraries supports academic freedom and the free expression of opinion. The Libraries will not exercise any censorship of materials that do not violate the guidelines as expressed in the University Libraries Exhibits Guidelines or local, state, or federal laws.

The UMKC Libraries subscribes to the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights as it applies to exhibit spaces and bulletin boards, specifically:

The library should not censor or remove an exhibit because some members of the community may disagree with its content. Those who object to the content of any exhibit held at the library should be able to submit their complaint and/or their own exhibit proposal to be judged according to the policies established by the library.

Challenges of a display, exhibit, or printed materials posted or displayed in a UMKC library may be sent in writing to the Dean of University Libraries. The Libraries will respond to written statements as follows:

  • The individual will be notified that UMKC Libraries has received his/her written statement of concern.
  • A review process will be conducted in a timely matter by Libraries Administration in response to an individual’s statement of concern.
  • While a concern is being considered, there will be no change in the status of the display, exhibit, or printed materials.
  • Upon completion of the review process, the appropriate administrator will notify the individual of the Libraries’ decision.
For questions about this policy, call (816) 235-1531 or email umkcula@umkc.edu.

Streaming video request

Streaming video request

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Case dimensions: 5’ long x 30” wide x 9” high sitting atop 3’ legs

Glass exhibit table


The First Floor Gallery is located just inside the main entrance of the Miller Nichols Library.

Wall with exhibit content

Conference Room 325

Located on the Third Floor of Miller Nichols Library. For access, enter the library at the north ground floor entrance or the west first floor entrance. Then take the stairs or the elevator to the third floor..

Map of third floor of Miller Nichols Library