Exhibitions & Events

Through its rotating exhibitions program, the MMAC regularly displays works from its Permanent Collection, curates traveling exhibitions, and showcases important regional, national, and international artists. See the Events page for programs associated with these shows. The museum hosts free tours of these exhibitions. Interested in a docent-led tour of our current show? Contact Ashley Rickman at (406)-243-2019 or email museum@umontana.edu. We're happy to schedule a tour during regular hours for any group of 5 to 10 people.




Anonymous, Senufo, Inland Ivory Coast, Rhythm Pounder, 1900-1950, mixed media wood and natural pigments, Tony Hoyt Collection. (Photo by Eileen Rafferty)


Alfred Boilot, The Connoisseur,
etching, circa 1880-1900.



Homage to Africa: The Tony Hoyt and Molly Shepherd Collections  

“These two Montana-based private collections reveal the richness and splendor of African art in the post-colonial period and the diverse world views of the distinct societies that created it,” said MMAC Director H. Rafael Chacón.

UM alumnus Tony Hoyt has collected African art since his youth. A large part of his collection was acquired by his mother, Dorothy Hoyt, a founder of the Ithaca College Museum. Much of the collection – particularly sculptures of ancestral figures and spirits, as well as masks used in elaborate masquerades – came from his time in the Peace Corps in Liberia during 1967-69. Another portion came from Confederated Salish and Kootenai tribal member Doug Allard, a long-time collector and purveyor of art from beyond the Western tradition. The Hoyt Collection, focused on the centrality of art in its ceremonial context, has been researched and studied extensively by UM art history students over the last decade.

UM Law School alumna and textile artist Molly Shepherd has collected African art for over 30 years. At the core of her collection are exquisite textiles created by the Kuba people of the Democratic Republic of Congo and other functional items such as baskets and headrests from Ethiopia and eastern central Africa. Shepherd said she prefers “the abstract to the representational … the challenge of ambiguity, unpredictability and surprise” in African art. “Some quality in the work touches us and sustains our attention, resonates within us in a way that may be difficult to articulate or resist,” she said. “It’s not unlike falling in love.”

Feb. 5 to May 8, 2021 At the Paxson Gallery.

Art Under Pressure: Function and Form in Prints from the MMAC Collection

Curated by University of Montana art students studying the history of prints and graphic design, Art Under Pressure examines European and American prints from the MMAC’s Permanent Collection from the 17th to early 20th centuries. Focusing on the myriad historical functions of the printed arts, along with the diverse techniques used to create them, student-curators selected and researched the works on paper and wrote the discursive wall labels. This show begins to bridge the gap between ephemeral visual culture, including newspaper cartoons, playing cards, and fashion plates, and the fine arts prints of old masters and avant-garde artists.
GLI Lounge | 3rd Floor | University Center
For information on the exhibition’s programming, call Rafael Chacón at 406-243-2019 or email rafael.chacon@umontana.edu. To schedule a guided tour, call Ashley Rickman at (406)-243-2019 or email at: ashley.rickman@mso.umt.edu