Arts & Culture

Submit Your Unique and Wondrous Object for UK Art Museum’s 'Cabinet of Wonder'

photo of untitled sculpture by Varujan Boghosian

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 21, 2019) People of all ages collect things that they find meaningful, interesting and valuable.

Collected objects include natural materials (stones, shells), cultural items (photographs, books, posters, dishes, autographs, toys, stamps, coins) and other items that reflect their experiences, values, and connections to others. These valued objects are often displayed in homes and offices — on walls, desks, tables and shelves.

These simple objects can tell complex stories, and the University of Kentucky Art Museum wants to see and hear about yours. The museum is interested in your unique and wondrous objects for the University of Kentucky’s "Cabinet of Wonder" exhibition. The free and public exhibition will be on display Jan. 25 through May 31, 2020, and will feature items from people across Kentucky.

Cabinets of wonder were typically private collections of objects that eventually evolved into the first public sense of what we think of museums being today. For 40 years, the UK Art Museum has done this work and shared the results with the public, in the form of temporary exhibitions and its permanent collection. With the exhibition "Cabinet of Wonder," the museum will display objects our community finds interesting and important.

The UK Art Museum wants to know about these items, how you came to possess them and why they are significant to you. If selected, your wondrous object could be part of the exhibition at the museum.

If you are interested in having your treasured item displayed, you can submit your object for consideration for the exhibition by following and completing the online submission form. This exhibition is open to Kentucky residents only and allows only one entry per person. The deadline to submit the form and image of your object is Nov. 4. For more information regarding submission details, please visit the exhibition website.

The mission of the UK Art Museum, part of the UK College of Fine Arts, is to promote the understanding and appreciation of art to enhance the quality of life for people of Kentucky through collecting, exhibiting, preserving and interpreting outstanding works of visual art from all cultures. Home to a collection of more than 4,800 objects including American and European paintings, drawings, photographs, prints and sculpture, the museum presents both special exhibitions and shows of work from its permanent collection. 

For more information or questions, contact Michaela Miles at 859-257-0336 or

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion three years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" two years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for four straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.