University of Montana Western logo.
Apply Visit More Info

Wine and Craft Beer Festival features local artists.

February 29, 2016

Cory Birkenbuel, a 4th generation Montanan was born and raised in Dillon. He graduated from the University of Montana Western in 2013 with a business administration degree. Cory works in a variety of artistic mediums, including glass blowing, which he learned at UMW.

“Producing art makes me a better person, by challenging my body and mind, building personal attributes that help create my ideas into a piece of artwork,” Birkenbuel said.

Eric Hammer studied film, television and photography at Montana State University. Hammer originally studied photography when darkrooms were utilized but now enjoys using digital photography to create art.

Hammer has taught photography at Montana Western as an adjunct professor. He and his wife live outside of Dillon.

Cody Mitchell is a studio potter and art educator living in Dillon, Mont. She received both her bachelor’s degree in elementary education (1983) and visual arts (2006) from Montana Western.

Since 2008 Mitchell has been working out of a studio she built that allows her not only the adequate space to create functional stoneware and porcelain pottery but the ability to hold art classes.

A lifelong artist, Charlotte Quist has felt that art was her best subject since she was eight years old. Quist has worked as a veterinarian and pathologist which have served her well with her current oil paintings in terms of observation and anatomic knowledge.

She has taught equine studies courses at Montana Western.

Quist lives near Dillon with her husband, also a veterinarian. She has recently began to dedicate more time to her artistic endeavors.

James Wigen is a Dillon native, resident and a graduate of Montana Western. While at UMW Wigen’s studies were focused on glass, ceramics and bronze casting. He served as a work study in the ceramics department where his duties were to mix clay bodies for students and also monitor and maintain the glass blowing facility.

Wigen has since worked in agriculture, logging and construction and his art is influenced by his experiences with physical labor. He has plans to establish and teach at a glass blowing facility or a community outreach facility that provides a place for artists of all mediums.

Wigen intends to continue his studies at the graduate level, pursuing new ideas and other mediums.

The festival is scheduled in the Keltz Arena on the Montana Western campus from 7 to 10 p.m. and will include 10 wine vendors, five craft beer vendors and hors d’oeuvres.

Tickets are $40 for individuals and $70 for couples. Call 406-683-7306 for tickets and more information.

All proceeds benefit the Montana Western Foundation.