Where We’re Going

Museum Rendering
Initial BAM design Rendering by MSU Masters in Architecture Student Eleanor Usick

Why a museum?

Bozeman Art Museum’s long-term goal is to establish and operate an accredited art museum whose purpose is to exhibit, document, collect, and preserve works of art to inspire our community. 

The Bozeman Art Museum enhances the quality of life of Gallatin Valley residents and adds to community vibrancy in numerous ways.

An Economic Impact Report prepared by the Northern Rocky Mountain Economic Development District dated May 2014 projected the potential economic impact of the Art Museum in the Gallatin Valley as significant. This report estimates that in year-three of full Bozeman Art Museum operations, museum and visitor expenditures will add an additional $30-million in total economic benefits to Gallatin Valley.

According to this Economic Impact Report, our museum expects to be a major visitor attraction drawing approximate 85,000 annual visitors (half of current annual admissions for the Museum of the Rockies), of the five-million annual visitors to the Bozeman area.

Building Timeline

We have created a realistic timeline that gives us the ability to grow and assure sustainability. Of course, timelines are flexible and can be accelerated based on the availability of financial resources.

Phase One: 2020

Last year, our focus was on securing funding commitments to support our first space. Our goal was to find approximately 2,500 sq ft of easily accessible space with a five-year lease. We wanted this space to be inviting, fun, and inspiring with classroom and workshop areas and about 1,500 sq. ft. to host revolving art exhibits. We opened our first home in January at 2612 W. Main Steet in Bozeman. Like everything Bozeman Art Museum does, our Phase One programming will progressively expand. Our plan is to always offer at least three art exhibits each year. Each exhibit will showcase art loaned from private collections, art galleries, and museums. As our staffing and volunteer capacity grows, so will our hours of operations. By the end of year three, we intend to be open full-time with trained staff and docents to provide for attendee’s comfort and education. As we build our capacity for exhibit accessibility, we will also be building our financial resources through a membership program.

Phase Two: 2025

Phase Two will consist of securing property and breaking ground on the first stage of our permanent building. We project this space to be approximately 5,000 square feet and provide additional exhibit space for both permanent and rotating collections as well as expanded classroom and programming space. Our estimates for land and Stage 1 building is approximately $3,500,000.

Phase Three: 2030

The time between Phase Two and Three will be devoted to strengthening our capacity (donors, members, staff, programming, operations) to build and operate the Bozeman Art Museum. This facility will be a 50,000 square foot accredited museum providing space for more permanent and rotating art exhibits, expanded space for Bozeman Art Museum’s signature community and youth programming, art collection storage space, offices, a lecture hall, a museum store, and possibly a small cafe.

Additional space would allow us to expand our programming to include:

  • Family Programs that will introduce children and adults to the varied world of art through guided tours, vacation programs, events, and various activities.
  • Adult Programs that will explore the complexities of art through a variety of programs that are accessible to audiences of all levels. Visitors will choose from several educational formats—tours, films, lectures, gallery talks, and readings that illuminate the connection of art to culture and history.
  • More Workshops by nationally known artists that provide an opportunity for learners to study with career artists who can enhance their capabilities.
  • School Tours designed to enrich school curricula and reflect the Bozeman Art Museum’s approach to engaging students in dialogue as they look at selected works of art.
  • Teachers and Educators will be given guided tours, hands-on or studio activities, resource materials, and will enjoy discussions about integrating art and culture into classroom learning.
  • Docent Training to provide volunteers the opportunity to lead visitors in the study of the history of art, the elements of art, museum education, and the study of the Museum’s collection.
  • Internships to cultivate the next generation of museum and art supporters, enthusiasts and professionals.

What Montanans* Believe About the Arts

*Research published in 2018 titled, Montanans Speak Out About the Arts

  • 75% believe the arts help students perform better academically
  • 61% believe the arts improve healing and the healthcare experience
  • 74% believe the arts have a social impact and improve the quality and livability of their community
  • 86% believe the arts impact tourism, attract travelers