Multicultural Art


Robert W. Gopher Chief Rocky Boy
Chief Rocky Boy
Robert W. Gopher
April 2016


The artist of the Month at the MSUN Multicultural Center is Robert Gopher. The celebration of April is titled “Powwow Days” in honor of the 40th anniversary of the Sweetgrass Society powwow.


Gopher is presenting his piece “Chief Rocky Boy” which is a 16” x 20” acrylic on canvas. Gopher is rekindling his artistic fire as after a break. This piece is a portrait of Chief Rocky Boy ... “based on conversations I had with my mother and photographs I have seen. Chief Rocky Boy was one of the founding fathers of the Rocky Boys Indian Reservation.” He adds… “I was told he referred to my grandfather as nephew.” Gopher explains this piece is a humble tribute to his ancestors for their work and sacrifices in finding and securing his homeland.

Gopher’s style is contemporary with Native and non-Native imagery, and he also explains that it is all about composition and color. In this particular painting, as several others, he likes to incorporate landscape since the land and environment are connected to his Native beliefs in many ways. In many of his works he tends to include “the beauty of the Bears Paw Mountains, a place of solace and home.”

Gopher holds a Bachelor’s of Art in Fine Arts from Eastern Montana College, now MSU Billings. He adds that the Renaissance painters broadened his appreciation of the arts and the Post-Impressionists are his inspiration. 

The MSUN Office of Diversity Awareness and Multicultural Programs (ODAMP) invites local and regional artists to exhibit their pieces, preferably those that have some link to multicultural themes. For more information, contact or call (406) 265-3589.