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Painting at The University of Montana is a comprehensive, vibrant program supporting a wide range of interests and approaches. No one specific style is favored, and a diversity of strategies for articulating ideas is fostered and encouraged.

Development of ideas and personal expression provide a central focus throughout all levels of painting classes. Students begin with a solid foundation in traditional technical skill, from paint handling to color theory. As students develop proficiency, courses increasing focus on experimental approaches, articulating concepts and understanding contemporary issues.
A varied selection of upper-division courses allows students to focus on a specific topic in depth, refine ideas, expand boundaries of process and materials, or find connections to contemporary art-making.


The undergraduate painting area is anchored by our large (nearly 4,000 square foot) studio classroom. With natural northern light, high ceilings, and movable walls for flexibility, it is equipped to handle a wide range of projects in both oil and acrylic. The painting area has a dedicated, well-equipped woodshop for construction of supports and canvasses.  Adjacent to the main painting classroom are shared semi-private studios for BFA students. Lockers are provided to enrolled students.

 Our graduate studios are housed at a separate facility in the historic Schreiber Gymnasium. Each graduate student has 24-hour access to a well-lit, semi-private studio. Additionally, the Schreiber graduate facilities have a complete woodshop, two small lounge areas and a computer lab.


Kevin Bell,  Associate Professor
MaryAnn Bonjorni,  Professor
James Bailey,  Professor


  • Painting I
  • Painting II
    • Contemporary Themes
    • The Figure and Identity
    • Process and Abstraction
    • Portfolio Development
  • Contemporary Mural Painting
  • Advanced Research
  • Senior Thesis
  • Independent Study
  • Graduate Studio
  • Graduate Thesis