What makes our program unique?

Joining theory and practice, and recognizing the importance of an interdisciplinary approach to problem solving, the art program encourages the development of the artist in all of us, both as a way of life and as a fulfilling livelihood and career.

The art program offers an opportunity for the student to engage in a meaningful involvement with the visual arts through active exploration, critical thinking, and inquiry. The program is designed to develop and enhance the ability to explore the expressive potential of varied media and techniques while linking content with form in developing personal expression.

The art program provides students with opportunities to work with established regional artists in a variety of media. The Great Falls region has a strong arts community which includes many graduates of the program. The Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art provides a setting for contemporary art and the C.M. Russell Museum has an exceptional Western collection and annually hosts an art event which attracts collectors from throughout the world.

Equipped facilities, small class sizes, personally designed programs, individual care and assistance, studio space, access, exhibit opportunities, and devoted faculty enable the UP art program to succeed in serving every student who desires to pursue the art experience.

Learning Objectives

Students will learn to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of principles and elements of visual design.
  2. Investigate the expressive potential of varied media and techniques.
  3. Apply basic terminology of visual art processes, media and theory.
  4. Integrate interdisciplinary approaches to problem solving and the development of personal expression.
  5. Examine the intention and process behind one’s own work, and the work of other artists throughout history.
  6. Analyze and distinguish periods of art with relevance to stylistic developments and their contribution to the development of human understanding and knowledge.
  7. Assess visual art to seek personal and universal meaning.
  8. Produce a body of work that seeks to link form and content, and synthesize personal expression with universal meaning.
  9. Prepare to pursue art as a livelihood, career and/or way of life.
  10. Create and maintain a productive, safe and cooperative learning community and environment.

Career Preparation

The art major provides preparation for careers in the visual arts and fine art crafts, expressive arts therapy, arts administration, art education, arts advocacy, studio technician; and design fields including graphic, architectural, film, theater, and industrial design. It also addresses the growing need for creative thinkers in every imaginable field and endeavor. Students are well prepared to continue their studies at the graduate level in many related areas of study.


Bachelor of Arts in Art


Art, concentration in Fine Art is available


Art minor is offered

Student Stories

“The UP [formerly University of Great Falls] art department taught me to see the world differently. I began to notice simple things like the shape of a leaf and shadow of a person walking by. Things that never caught my eye suddenly did and then I started to notice the injustice in the world, so I utilized art to help others see this injustice, and I focused my art thesis on the hidden reality of hunger and homelessness in our community and around the world. The UP art department isn’t just about making art which is powerful in itself, it is about developing strong people that see the world differently and work to make a difference in the world.”
-Dannette Fadness 


Julia Becker
David Rothweiler
Corey Gross
Douglas Wendt
Monica Bauer