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They have filled the walls of countless homes and businesses around the world. And with every print, painting, poster, license plate, and even beer label, the creator gets to show off his native home, the great state of Montana. 

"I wanted to make things and you walked into a room, and you looked over and saw it, and you might go 'whoa', and you might want to come over and spend a little time with it," Monte Dolack says with a smile.

And his work certainly brings the "whoa" factor.

Dolack has been wowing the people of Montana for more than five decades. He was born in Great Falls, and it was there where he learned the beauty of his home state. 

"I think it was that sky in Great Falls. Amazing, it's truly Big Sky Country. There would be a butterfly-wing sunset that you would look at and say, just amazing. So those skies, and those colors found their way into my pictures," Dolack says.

If there is a common thread linking the hundreds of published Dolack pieces over the years, it always goes back to the landscape. Nature has captured his imagination, with his work trying to start conversations about the natural world that we live in.

"Let's say the Suburban Refuge, the ducks are in a bathroom, and the tub is running over, maybe their swamp was drained, and they had to find refuge, so the tables were turned. Trying not to let the seriousness of the issues of whatever is going on to filter the humor that you might be able to use to view the world," Dolack says with a smile.

That humor is a Dolack trademarks. He can stun you with the beauty of Flathead Lake, but he can also make you laugh when you see a man dance with a trout in the middle of the Clark Fork River. 

After closing down his Missoula art gallery in 2015 to step away and focus on painting, Dolack partnered with one of his former employees, Amy Doty. Doty owns Missoula's Frame of Mind, now the exclusive home of the Monte Dolack collection. 

"All Montanans have sat on a mountain and looking out on a sunset and have that thought. Monte is able to capture those moments for us. So when you look at some of his landscapes, you feel like I've been there before, I remember this time," Doty says.

And it's not just the people of Montana that have grown to appreciate Dolack's work. His work has come to represent the state to the rest of the world.

"Japan, Canada, Germany, France. So I think it's allowing those people to see a place that is not well known around the world. And how amazing it is. And I think it does bring a lot of people here," Doty says.

Today in his Missoula home, Dolack continues to create new pieces. And to use his own words, he just continues to love his job. Through the countless pieces that have drawn eyes and attention and glory to Montana, he's had one goal in mind.

"For 45 years, I stayed here and made things. I tried to be a voice, a visual voice, of this place. It kind of gets under your skin, or it did mine anyway" Dolack says.

He remains a visual voice from the Last Best Place, capturing our memories and our emotions about our beautiful home. With his brush, and his keen eye, he shows us the treasures of the natural world that are all around us. 

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