Art in the Beartooths: Quick Finish & Art Auction

Arts Guild’s 46th event fills Depot Park in Red Lodge with artists July 13

Art Beat
“Morning Star” by Terry Cooke Hall, one of this year’s Signature Artists.Photo © Terry Cooke Hall

Art in the Beartooths brings a bevy of artists to Red Lodge July 13 for the Quick Finish, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Depot Park, followed by the festive dinner and auction at 4 p.m. The Carbon County Arts Guild and Depot Gallery’s annual fundraiser attracts artists and art admirers from far and wide.

Works by this year’s Signature Artists – Terry Cooke Hall, Marcia Selsor and Sonja Caywood – are on display through July 28 at Depot Gallery. The trio joins a mix of 25 emerging and established artists for the Quick Finish and auction.

Executive Director Kim Kapalka says selecting Signature Artists is always a challenge for the committee. “There’s just so much talent out there.”

“We look for artists who have notable experience, and have been professional artists for awhile, to set the tone for the event,” she explains. At the same time, their styles need to be compatible for the month-long exhibit. “My gosh, the gallery looks awesome,” she says of this year’s exhibit.

The Quick Finish participants come from around the region and offer a lively mix of genres, from paintings and sculpture, to woodwork, beading and ceramics. Artists have five hours to complete a piece for the evening’s auction. Although a few create a work from start to finish, most bring something that’s almost done, and finish up in the park.

Visitors are welcome to stroll the grounds and visit with artists as they work. The artists also enjoy socializing, says Kapalka. “They wander around and meet each other – it’s fun to watch,” she says.

Many of the participants are friends or acquaintances who have met at other art events across the state. “You look at Montana as a whole, and you look at these artists – it’s really a small world,” she adds.

The 46th annual event is the Carbon County Arts Guild’s biggest fundraiser. “Art in the Beartooths helps keep the guild alive and thriving in our community,” says Kapalka.

In addition to Depot Gallery, the guild’s year-around offerings provide education and inspiration in a community with a robust cultural scene.

About Art in the Beartooths

In addition to the live auction of 28 pieces, a companion silent auction features around 60 pieces submitted by guild members. Bidding opened June 28 and closes 15 minutes after the live auction ends July 13.

Auctioneer is Troy Black and master of ceremonies for the outdoor event is veteran Montana broadcaster Lynne Turner Fitzgerald. Admission to the Quick Finish is free; tickets to the evening auction and catered dinner are $60.

For more information, call 406-446-1370 or visit

About this year’s Signature Artists


Marcia Selsor’s “Flow – Blue Orb” is among the signature pieces at this year’s auction.Photo © Marcia Selsor

Red Lodge artist Marcia Selsor is a Professor Emerita from Montana State University-Billings where she taught for 25 years, chaired the Art Department, was elected President of the Academic Senate. She also served as director of the ceramics program for the University of Hawaii in 2005 and taught at the University of Texas Brownsville as a guest lecturer.

Selsor has displayed her work in many national and international exhibitions, and received two Fulbright Fellowships and a National Endowment for the Humanities grant for studies in Theology/Spirituality at Fordham University. In addition, she has served on several boards related to the field of ceramic arts as well as the Mental Health Center Foundation in Billings.

Terry Cooke Hall of Bozeman says her passion for art as a youth led her to take classes and workshops in graphic design and illustration, including studies of the works of the Golden Age illustrators. In 1978, Hall put her training to work illustrating for land development firms in Southern California. After 15 years, she left her job and cofounded a commercial art business.

Since 2006, Hall has focused exclusively on developing a fine art career, studying with nationally known artists and focusing on the foundational principles of fine art, impressionistic light and color. Hall’s realistic figures are set in an imaginary world of swirling skies, often backlit by an abstraction of the sun or moon using color, patterns, and textural elements that blend into a unique contemporary style.

Sonja Caywood was born in Sheridan, Wyo., but raised in Montana. She spent summers in settings reminiscent of Charles M. Russell paintings, with mess-wagons, tents, tipis and a rope corral. Being immersed in nature, far from modern distractions, Caywood learned to study and appreciate the world around her. Animals and livestock are prominent not only in her memories but also in her paintings.

In 2012 Caywood lost her full-time job, which led her to pursue her lifelong dream of painting. She lives with her husband at the foot of the Bighorn Mountains near the Montana line in Dayton, Wyo.