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Montana Modernists: The Rabbit Holes of Research with Michele Corriel

Montana Modernists: The Rabbit Holes of Research with Michele Corriel

The Montana State University Library will host author and alumna Michele Corriel for a discussion of her new book “Montana Modernists: Shifting Perceptions of Western Art” at 4 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2, on the second floor of the library. The event is free and will be followed by a reception in the library’s Archives and Special Collections.

Corriel holds a master’s degree in art history and a Ph.D. in American studies from MSU. Her book is based on her doctoral research and draws heavily from the Bob and Gennie DeWeese Papers housed in Archives and Special Collections. Corriel’s book explores Montana’s avant-garde art movement, Montana Modernism, which grew after World War II.

Montana Modernism pioneers Jessie Wilber and Frances Senska, Bob and Gennie DeWeese, Isabelle Johnson, and Bill Stockton created a community where modernist ideas and art flourished.

“Most people don’t think about Modernism when they think of Montana, but I’m hoping to change that,” Corriel said. “My goal is to spread the word that Montana isn’t all about cowboys and buffalo. It has a vibrant contemporary art scene with sturdy roots in Modernism, dating back to the 1940s.” 

Corriel’s book examines each artist and how they developed Modernism throughout their lifetimes. Montana did not go through the many stages of Modernism that Paris or New York City did; instead it came on all at once and reached Montanans through a visual language they could understand. Corriel will discuss her book as well as her archival research in in MSU’s collections and the interviews she conducted with many of the artists’ former students.

There will be a book signing after the talk, and copies of Corriel’s book will be available for purchase.

The event is presented in partnership with MSU Library, Friends of MSU Library, the Department of American Studies and the MSU College of Arts and Architecture. For questions, contact outreach librarian Jan Zauha 406-994-6554 or jzauha@montana.edu.

Friday, December 2, 2022
4:00pm - 6:00pm
Second Floor

Event Organizer

Ann Vinciguerra

Upcoming Library Events

Time Zone: Mountain Time - US & Canada (change)

3:00pm - 6:00pm, Second Floor, .