special events

Art Auction 56 (February – March 2024)

Yellowstone Art Auction 56
Celebrating the YAM’s 60th Anniversary year in 2024!
Exhibition Opening: Friday, February 2, 2024
Closing Live Auction and 
60th Anniversary Gala Event: Saturday, March 2, 2024

The Yellowstone Art Museum celebrates its 60th Anniversary in 2024 with the Yellowstone Art Auction! The YAM’s annual auction features artworks available for silent and live bidding, spotlighting the artwork of regional artists as well as up-and-coming talent, and inspiring the support of patrons at every stage of collecting. The month-long exhibition will be highlighted by events, educational programming, and competitive bidding that will all culminate the evening of the 60th Anniversary Gala & Live Auction.

The 2024 Auction exhibition will be on display in the YAM’s galleries from Friday, February 2 through Sunday, March 2. The signature fundraiser features several events including an opening reception, talks with auction artists, and the live auction gala finale. Artist talks will take place on Thursday evenings during the run of the exhibition. The live auction gala on March 2nd will conclude the bidding for absentees and those attending. For table sales, sponsorship, or absentee bidding information please reach out to Precious McKenzie at development@artrmuseum.org.

The annual Art Auction raises crucial support for the exhibitions and educational programs that the Yellowstone Art Museum presents to the community year-round. The YAM is dedicated to showing our appreciation to our regional artists, patrons, and partners by giving back to the community, not only through outreach and education programs, but by bringing in exhibitions that provide a platform to engage in critical conversations concerning modern art and culture.

first fridays

Come to the YAM to enjoy a unique artistic experience every First Friday of the month!

Meet a local artist, listen to the sounds of a talented musician, participate in a stimulating lecture — every First Friday is different.

First Fridays at the YAM

Friday, December 1, 2023 | Special WinterFair hours from 11 AM – 8 PM
Mark your calendars — one day only! WinterFair will coincide with the annual Holiday Stroll and December ArtWalk in downtown Billings. Vendors will range from fine art, fiber work, artisan foods and body products, ceramics and more.

Click here to check out our current lineup of exhibitions at the YAM.

gallery conversations

Presentation on Joseph Henry Sharp
Thursday, December 7, 2023 | 5 PM Reception and 5:30 PM Presentation

Join Thomas Minckler and Corby Skinner for a gallery conversation about Joseph Henry Sharp. The program will center around Sharp’s work in portraiture and his role in preserving Native American histories, as well as the exceptional provenance of his work in this exhibition from the Alhambra in southern Spain. Additionally, Minckler will discuss the generosity of the Bair family and the importance of having Sharp’s work in Montana. Cash bar opens at 5:00 PM, event at 5:30 PM. Admission is free for this gallery talk.

yam free days

In addition to First Fridays of each month, where Museum admission is free from 4–8 PM, YAM also has the following day when admission is free:

Valentine’s Day
Tuesday, February 14, Free Admission

International Museum Day
Thursday, May 18, Free Admission

Will James’s Birthday
Tuesday, June 6, Free Admission

Educator Day
Saturday, October 7, Free Admission

Indigenous People Day Observed
Sunday, October 8, Free Admission

Veterans Day
Saturday, November 11, Free Admission

YAM members can visit the Museum free-of-charge year-round.


When: Friday, December 1, 2023 | 11 AM – 8 PM

Mark your calendars — one day only! WinterFair will coincide with the annual Holiday Stroll and December ArtWalk in downtown Billings. Vendors will range from fine art, fiber work, artisan foods and body products, ceramics and more.

The Yellowstone Art Museum will also offer festive activities for visitors of all ages and seasonal refreshments. WinterFair is a great opportunity to start your holiday shopping locally with one-of-a-kind gifts that directly support our community.

Ride on the Holiday Stroll trolley straight to and from the YAM with stops every 15–20 minutes from 5 – 8 PM.

NEW THIS YEAR! Members and guests WinterFair Raffle. Museum members will receive a free raffle ticket with every museum visit between November 14 and December 1, 2023. Members must show their current membership card to the front desk staff. Non-museum members can purchase raffle tickets for $20 at the front desk. WinterFair Raffle will have prizes including a Ski & Stay Package at Big Sky Resort and bundled gift baskets from the YAM Store. Raffle winners will be drawn at the end of WinterFair on Friday, December 1 at 8 PM.

Thank you to our WinterFair Sponsor:

masquerade at the yam

Masquerade at the Yellowstone Art Museum
When: Saturday, October 28, 2023
Tickets: $55
Tickets on Sale:
Friday, September 1 at 10 AM

The most creative and awe-inspiring Halloween party in town, Masquerade at the Yellowstone Art Museum, is back for another night of entertainment, dancing, mystics, and so much more! Guests will be wowed by live performances, tarot and mystic readings, Billings’ most creative costume contest, photo booths, and a packed dancefloor run by DJ Benefit. Party goers will also enjoy cocktails, local brews and festive appetizers.

This year’s theme is Beam Me Up! Planet Earth is in the rear view. Humanity including ghouls, monsters, aliens, celebrities, and everyone in between is on a voyage through the stars for one night only to an alternate galaxy…things will inevitably get…strange! The YAM invites guests to interpret the theme in any way that inspires their creativity. Guests should note that the theme is NOT required, but rather up for interpretation. We encourage attendees to let their creativity shine when considering their individual or group costumes by hosting the ultimate premier costume contest—and, yes, there will be prizes!

• Best Theme Interpretation
• Best Art-Inspired Costume
• Best Couple Costume
• Best Group Costume (3+)

The YAM is thrilled to bring the Masquerade back to the community on Saturday, October 28, 2023. Doors will open at 7 PM and the fun wraps up at 11 PM. You don’t want to miss this sell-out event at the Yellowstone Art Museum.

Stay tuned for exciting updates on our Facebook page.

Thank you to our Masquerade Sponsors:

YAM Travel

Contemporary Art in Chelsea and Beyond: New York City

Experience the vibrant contemporary art scene in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York City this summer with the Yellowstone Art Museum!

An exclusive small group tour for YAM Contributor Level Members with Jessica Kay Ruhle, Executive Director of the Yellowstone Art Museum.

We invite you to travel to New York City with us to visit the Jaune Quick-To-See Smith: Memory Map a retrospective at the Whitney Museum of American Art which prominently features two works from the YAM’s permanent collection. This tour will be guided by the exhibition curator, Laura Phipps, Assistant Curator at the Whitney Museum.

Additionally, trip participants will enjoy tours of the contemporary art galleries in Chelsea, the public art installed along the High Line, and visits to the Museum of Modern Art and Museum of Arts and Design. Travelers will have options to include a performance at the Metropolitan Opera (Swan Lake, July 11) and a Broadway show.

The trip price includes all museum and gallery experiences, tour-related transportation, and two shared meals at celebrated restaurants in Chelsea.

We hope you will join us for this special, behind-the-scenes tour of the Chelsea contemporary art scene. Complete your enrollment online today!



Cost is $985 per person and includes all museum experiences, tour-related transportation, and a celebratory group meal in Chelsea. The price does not include hotel (see below), airfare to NYC, or transportation to and from the airport. Tickets to the Metropolitan Opera (Swan Lake, July 11) and a Broadway Show (July 13) are optional.


Museum staff will be based at the centrally located Fairfield Inn & Suites, NYC Midtown/Penn Station. Travelers wishing to stay at the Fairfield Inn should reserve their room directly through the hotel or their preferred third-party travel site. Live locally or prefer a different hotel? No problem. However, trip participants not at the Fairfield Inn will be responsible for their own morning transportation.


Email Precious to make your reservation today! With room for only 10 guests, space will fill quickly. Registration is only open until June 11.

This exclusive tour is available to current YAM Contributing Level Members and above. If you are not already a Contributing Level Member, that annual membership will be added to the cost of your trip registration.

Questions? Please contact Precious McKenzie at 406-256-6804 x225.

Blue Star Families

National Endowment for the Arts and Blue Star Families

The Yellowstone Art Museum will proudly participate in the Blue Star Museum program, sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, and the U.S. Department of Defense. The Blue Star Museum program provides free admission to the YAM, and other museums across the country, beginning on May 20, 2023, Armed Forces Day, through September 4, 2023, Labor Day, for all active- duty military personnel and their families, including the National Guards and Reserves. We thank our military and their families for their commitment and service.

Blue Star Museum logo