John Dare Buffalo
John Dare Howland, Buffalo on the Plains
Oil on canvas, circa
MMAC Permanent Collection
Gift of Bill and Polly Nordeen

Denizens: Wildlife on the Western Frontier
June 7 - October 6, 2018

This exhibition elucidates the breathtaking variety of the fauna of the American West of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The spectrum of indigenous wildlife on the American frontier – from wild horses and bison to eagles and rattlesnakes - will be on view through sixty-four vintage engravings by legendary artists including John James Audubon, Karl Bodmer, Alfred Jacob Miller, and Frederic Remington. Through a generous loan from UM’s Department of Wildlife Biology, corresponding animal specimens will also be on view.


Rudy Autio Tapestry
Rudy AutioMontana Horses
Rya tapestrywool, 1986
MMAC Permanent Collection
(PARTV Lobby)

June 7 - September 22, 2018

Horses played a foundational part in the history of the American West. From Spanish breeds used by Native Americans to early explorers, early mining industry pit ponies, and today’s professional rodeo lines, equines played a critical role in human work and leisure. Horse traces the art and culture inspired by what was merely, at first, the most pragmatic and efficient form of travel and power available to early Americans. The exhibition charts the imagery of horses in Western art through the creative output of graphic artists, printmakers, photographers, painters, and sculptors. Included are works from the MMAC Permanent Collection, as well as several loans from private collectors, by artists Aden Arnold, Rudy Autio, Sheryl Bodily, MaryAnn Bonjorni, Fra Dana, Monte Dolack, Nick Eggenhofer, Stephanie Frostad, George Gogas, Michael Horse, Louise Johns, Bruce Lubo, Alfred Jacob Miller, Henry and Peter Meloy, Sheila Miles, Frank Morbillo, Charles E. Morris, Eadweard Muybridge, Ace Powell, Karen Rice, Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, Ben Steele, Ted Waddell, Olaf Wieghorst.

Beth Lo Good Children
Beth Lo, Good Children
ca. 1993, porcelain with slip inlay and underglazes
MMAC Permanent Collection
Museum Purchase

 Trey Hill Little Taste
Trey Hill, Just a Little Taste
2009, hand-built white earthenware
MMAC Permanent Collection
Gift of Jon and Anne Bertsche

Decades: Ceramics from the Permanent Collection 
January 11- May 26, 2018

The exhibition surveys the Permanent Collection from the beginning of the American ceramics movement all the way up to the present moment, examining formal and thematic developments since its onset in the mid-1950s. Beginning with collaborations by Peter and Henry Meloy and early works by Peter Voulkos and Branson Stevenson, the show highlights work that broke with clay’s decorative and utilitarian heritage to usher in what we now know as contemporary ceramics. In the subsequent decades, artists like Frances Senska, Tony Hepburn, and Ken Little turned toward a sculptural understanding of clay, guided more by the physical properties of the medium than principles of quality manufacture. These artists laid the groundwork for the more whimsical work produced by artists in the 1980s, such as Tom Rippon and Douglas Baldwin. Examples of their work appear alongside ceramics by Josh DeWeese, David Shaner, and Kurt Weiser.  Some of the most daring advances in artistic sensibility and glazing and firing techniques were made in this era, and the works on view will elate both ceramics enthusiasts and newcomers to the clay medium.

More contemporary trends like the emergence of personal narrative and mythology will be on view in works by artists defining the field today, including current UM ceramics faculty Trey Hill and Beth Lo, as well as recent graduates Crista Ann Ames, Megan Bogonovich, Alex Kraft, Ryan Mitchell, and Sue Tirrell. This exhibition is co-curated by UM Professor of Ceramics Julia Galloway and MMAC Curator of Art Jeremy Canwell.


Brunovsky Lady With Hat
Albín Brunovský, Lady with a Hat II (Mirror)
1981, Intaglio (etching and mezzotint),
MMAC Permanent Collection
Gift of J. Scott Patnode in Memory of Wally and Irene Patnode

Contemporary Eastern European Prints: Recent Gifts from J. Scott Patnode 
January 11- May 26, 2018

This exhibition will present a selection of work by Croatian, Czech, Hungarian, Polish, Romanian, Slovak, and Slovenian artists, offering an extraordinary glimpse into creativity in the shadow of Soviet communism. From Khrushchev’s cultural “Thaw” to the Prague Spring, the collapse of the Soviet Union and its aftermath, Eastern European artists used the printed form to recover their national traditions and critique the totalitarian culture that had eclipsed them. Examples from the accompanying research archive, consisting of 59 rare art books, corresponding monographs, and exhibition catalogues will also be on view.    

Rafael Chacon headshot

Lecture and book signing, Over There! Montanans in the Great War
September 21, 2017

Presented by guest curator and catalog author H. Rafael Chacón, Ph.D., in the Montana Theatre, PARTV Center.


Camo Helment
AnonymousCamoflaged Helmet Worn by Army Medic,
Private First Class Turner A Ross,
Circa 1917-18,
Courtesy Tom Ross Collection

Over There! Montanans in the Great War 
September 21 - December 16, 2017

World War I was a defining moment for modern civilization and Montana contributed to the effort like no other state in the nation. Over There! features more than 200 artifacts and works of art focused on the lives of four individuals from Montana or closely tied to the state. Guest Curator and Catalog Author Dr. H. Rafael Chacón spent five years planning the exhibition. A doughboy, an aviator, a Red Cross nurse, and the U.S. Ambassador to Berlin experienced the Great War's victories and degradations firsthand. This exhibition, a commemoration of the centennial of the U.S. entry into the Great War, explores the nation’s sacrifice, both on the home front and Over There! 

Todd Patriot Parade
James ToddPatriot Parade
Patriot Parade
Acrylic and oil woodblock print
Courtesy of the artist

James Todd: Looney Toones 
June 8 - September 9, 2017

When James Todd retired from a long teaching career at UM in 2000, his mother presented him a collection of drawings he created from age five to eight during WWII, unseen by the artist for more than 50 years.  Looney Toones features these remarkable drawings as well as the artist’s reinterpretations of his childhood art through woodcut prints created a half-century later.  In this exhibition the young artist and the mature one come full circle. 

Buswell Mine Bits
Richard BuswellMine Bits
2013, black and white photograph,
Courtesy of the artist

Richard Buswell: What They Left Behind 
June 8 - September 9, 2017

MMAC presents a new body of work by fourth-generation Montana photographer Richard Buswell.  A retired physician, Buswell has been capturing Montana settlement sites, ghost towns and frontier homesteads for more than forty years.  His work invites us to ponder shapes, shades and the patterns they make marking the effects of time on place.