Yellowstone Art Museum Golden Anniversary - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

Yellowstone Art Museum Golden Anniversary

Posted: Updated:
BILLINGS -

Thursday night marks the kickoff of the Yellowstone Art Museum's 46th Annual Art Auction exhibit, but this year actually marks the 50th anniversary for the museum.

"I'm proud that we're the first contemporary art museum in the state and the wider region. To have reached the half century milestone, I think that says a lot about perhaps the non-stereotypic expectations that people in the area have for art," says the museum's executive director, Robyn Peterson.

The museum opened in 1964 in what is now the south end of the building.

"The Yellowstone Art Center was founded and first occupied the old Yellowstone County jailhouse, and until the late 90's, that was the only facility that it had," says Peterson. The newer, larger facility opened in 1998.

"We're proud of to be able to present contemporary art, yet at the same time we're preserving an historic legacy, not only in the way that we build or permanent collection of art, but in the fact that we're continuing to practice adaptive reuse of an historic building."

One of the most thrilling - and daunting - parts of moving the museum into its second half century is the ongoing opportunity to introduce new, up-and-coming artists to a wider audience.

"It's fun and scary, because sometimes, you know, we don't have the benefit of historic hindsight," Peterson says. "When you're dealing with contemporary art, you don't know what's going to stand the test of time. You do your best to bring forward what you think is the most solid, most exciting, most thought-provoking material - but you don't know. That's kind of exciting.

The art auction exhibition starts on Thursday night at 5:30 PM.  The works will be on display until the auction on March 1.  Between the live and silent auctions, the exhibition includes around 200 pieces, including both paintings and sculptures. The auction is the Yellowstone Art Museum's biggest annual fundraiser.

  • LocalMore>>

  • Montana Make-A-Wish Hosts Missouri Boy

    Montana Make-A-Wish Hosts Missouri Boy

    Thursday, July 31 2014 1:13 AM EDT2014-07-31 05:13:55 GMT
    Make-A-Wish Montana is hosting a Missouri family in Big Timber from July 26 – Aug.1. It's a dream come true for one 8-year-old boy.
    Make-A-Wish Montana is hosting a Missouri family in Big Timber from July 26 – Aug.1. It's a dream come true for one 8-year-old boy.
  • Street Lights Needed

    Street Lights Needed

    Thursday, July 31 2014 12:51 AM EDT2014-07-31 04:51:12 GMT
    Streets that run for several blocks, without a single street light. It is a dark reality many residents throughout the Magic City face when the sun goes down. Leo Robinson lives on Monad Rd., east of 24th Street. He said if street lights were placed on Monad, safety for everyone would improve. Terry Smith, City Traffic Engineer, said the city is more than willing to work with anyone, on any street, which lacks street lights.
    Streets that run for several blocks, without a single street light. It is a dark reality many residents throughout the Magic City face when the sun goes down. Leo Robinson lives on Monad Rd., east of 24th Street. He said if street lights were placed on Monad, safety for everyone would improve. Terry Smith, City Traffic Engineer, said the city is more than willing to work with anyone, on any street, which lacks street lights.
  • Hells Angels in Cody

    Hells Angels in Cody

    Thursday, July 31 2014 12:06 AM EDT2014-07-31 04:06:53 GMT
    Hundreds of Hells Angels are coming to Cody for a national meeting this week. The motorcycle club apparently likes the northwest Wyoming town. They held their world run there in 2006. Police presence is heavy in Cody now.
    Hundreds of Hells Angels are coming to Cody for a national meeting this week. The motorcycle club apparently likes the northwest Wyoming town. They held their world run there in 2006. Police presence is heavy in Cody now.