about Brett Thuma

Brett Thuma was born in Sycamore, Illinois, in 1968. From an early interest in art and the natural world, Brett went on to receive formal training at Albion College in Albion, Michigan. There, he completed a degree in Art and a degree in American Studies. Soon after graduating in 1990, Brett moved to Bigfork, Montana, where he now operates a studio/gallery. The move to the West has given Brett the opportunity to study wildlife and their habitat first hand, which he feels is very important to the quality and authenticity of his paintings. He enjoys travelling, and takes every opportunity to gather background material for his work.

Brett paints a variety of subjects including landscapes, flyfishermen/women, big game, and even songbirds. "My excitement for the natural world continues to grow as I learn more about its workings." he explains.

Brett has received various awards, including Best of Show at the Festival of Western Song, Tall tales, Poetry, and Art in 1995, People's Choice Award and a Silver Medal in the Jim Ford Memorial art competition in 1996, and a Grand Prize in Bigfork's first annual Sidewalk Chalk drawing competition, May 1999.

Brett spends much of his time away from the easel working on native plant restoration projects he intiated near Bigfork. He is also a frequent contributor to a variety of conservation organizations. His wish is that people will pay more attention to native plant communities in their area and in their own yards.

The Brett Thuma Gallery is located in Twin Birch Square in Downtown Bigfork, Montana.
Ph. (406)837-4604 E-Mail brettt@digisys.net


4 yrs. Art including independant study St.Charles High School St. Charles, IL,1983-86
Albion College 1986-1990 B.A. Degree- Art B.A. Degree- American Studies

Art Seminars

Yellowstone Thule September 1991
Mark Ogle/Joe Abbrescia Seminar Glacier Nat'l Park Sept. 1991
Zemsky/Hines Beartooth Art School featuring John Seerey-Lester and Paco Young
Zemsky/Hines Beartooth Art School featuring Rod Lawrence 1992
Wolf Prairie Seminar featuring Lee Cable, Mort Solberg, and John Pitcher 1992
John Seerey-Lester seminar Denali Nat'l Park Alaska 1992
Heiner Hertling/Mort Solberg Seminar Big Sky, MT, 1993
Zemsky/Hines Beartooth Art School featuring Bob Kuhn 1994
Cowboy Artists of America Seminar 320 Ranch Gallatin Valley, MT 1995
Instructor Mumm/Ukrainetz Seminar Polebridge, MT 1996
Instructor Mumm/Ukrainetz Seminar Coram, MT 1997


Two pieces Permenant Collection St. Charles High School
Yellowstone Park Exhibit Old Faithful Inn 1992
American Museum of Wildlife Art Exhibit Red Wing, MN, 1992
Bigfork Cultural Arts Center 1991 and 1995
Northern Wildlife Expo Lansing, MI, 1993
Pacific Rim Wildlife Art Show Seattle, WA,1996
1st Annual Bigfork Sidewalk Chalk Drawing Competition May 1999,2000
"Wet Paint" demonstration/exhibit Hockaday Museum Kalispell, MT May 1999
Montana Land Reliance "Artists for Open Space" Show/Auction August 1999 and 2001
Best in the West Art Auction for Vital Ground "A Night for the Grizzlies" March 2000
Friends of the Frankfort Library 23rd Annual Christmas Art Exhibition/Sale Nov. 7-9, 2003
“Celebrating Diversity” Flathead Cty. Democratic Women show Sept. 2003
Hockaday Museum Spring miniature show May 2002,2003,2004,2005,2006
Montana Land Reliance Murder Mystery Show July 2002
Treasure State Art Show Hamilton, MT July 2002,2004,2006
Hockaday Museum “Members Only Show” Oct-Jan. 2003, 2004,2005


Best of Show Festival of Western Song, Tall Tales, Poetry, and Art Hamilton, MT 1995
People's Choice Award and Silver medal Jim Ford Memorial Art Competition Federation for North American Wild Sheep Convention Reno, NV, 1996
Grand Prize 1st Annual Bigfork Sidewalk Chalk Drawing Competition 1999