Helena Public Art Committee (HPAC) History and Projects

"All of the Above, None of the Above" - by Chip Clawson, located in Pioneer Park, downtown Helena.
"All of the Above, None of the Above" - by Chip Clawson, located in Pioneer Park, downtown Helena.

History of the Helena Public Art Committee (HPAC)

The City of Helena Public Art Committee was created by resolution of the Helena City Commission on November 16, 1998 - Resolution #11316. The City of Helena Public Art Committee, as an advisory committee to the City Commission, is responsible for any visual work of art displayed on an on-going basis in one of the following places:

  • on the interior or exterior of any city-owned facility;
  • on any city-owned property; and
  • on non-city property if the work of art is installed or financed, either wholly or in part, with city funds, city received donations, or grants procured by the city.

A "work of art" is defined by the Helena Public Art Committee as any original and unique creation in visual media that is accepted by the City of Helena Public Art Committee. 



The HPAC has developed criteria and application forms to submit public art proposals for the City of Helena. 

The process includes submitting an initial inquiry form for a preapplication meeting with the HPAC.  A pre-application conference is a meeting scheduled by the City of Helena Public Art Committee (HPAC), at no cost, to assist you in initiating the process for public art proposals. The purpose of the pre-application conference is to inform you of the steps required to initiate and complete the process in accordance with HPAC criteria.

Following the preapplication meeting, an application form can be submitted for a public art proposal. 


HPAC Members

Helena Public Art Committee members are chosen based on their experience and their ability to represent one of the following areas: two-dimensional art, three-dimensional art, arts administration, architecture, the citizens of Helena, the city staff and the city commission. 

  • Vivian Hayes, chair; artist
  • Carol Montgomery, vice-chair; artist
  • City Commissioner Katherine Haque-Hausrath
  • John Moore, arts organization representative 
  • Cienna Cullen, artist
  • Joshua Fruge, citizen at large
  • Jim Gilman, artist
  • Bobi Harris, citizen at large
  • Moira McNutt, arts organization representative
  • Carol Swanson, artist
  • Parks and Recreation 
  • HPAC staff: Kathy Macefield


HPAC Activities

The Helena Public Art Committee divides its responsibilities into several main areas: 

  • the acquisition and placement of publicly owned or financed public art;
  • securing additional funding for art acquisition, and maintenance of existing works;
  • documenting the location and history of all public art pieces in the Helena area; and
  • hosting public events such as Chalk Up Helena! and the Open Studios Tour to promote public art.

 The Public Art Committee meets the second Thursday of the month at the City County building, 316 N. Park Ave. Please contact the Community Development office for the meeting room or to place an item on the agenda.



2013 HPAC Projects

The Helena Public Art Committee has the following projects in 2013:

Saturday, July 20th - Chalk Up Helena!  a family-friendly sidewalk chalk art event, 9:00 AM-4:00 PM on the Downtown Walking Mall.

Saturday, September 21st and Sunday, September 22nd - Helena Area Open Studios Tour inviting the public to see artists at work in their studios in a variety of mediums.




Contact Information

Helena Public Art Committee
City of Helena Community Development 
Room 445
4th Floor, City-County Building
316 N. Park Avenue
Helena MT  59623
(406) 447-8491