The Art Department under Father Catich’s leadership had very high standards. He made that crystal clear when he provided every Art Major with the following note dated September 20, 1967:

The ability to draw is basic to the skill of art. Techniques are decidedly secondary. In the past several years the graduation of seniors who lacked sufficient skill in drawing has been a source of embarrassment. This has not been due to a lack of instruction on the part of the art faculty. Instruction can only go so far. The rest is up to the student who must put that instruction into practice. Perhaps we have been somewhat lax in not insisting strenuously enough on this fundamental skill. Hence, from this date on, the acquisition of this basic DRAWING ABILITY will not be left to chance.

ALL JUNIOR ART-MAJORS are required to submit a portfolio of drawings and three sketchbooks for a review by the faculty of the art department at the end of the semester — January, 1968. The purpose of this review is to determine which students will be permitted to continue as Art-Majors. Dates for this personal review will be posted during exam week to give students who do not measure up to this requirement the opportunity for changing their registration and major.
E. Catich, Art Dept. head

 photo courtesy Nancy Trottier (aka Sadie)

Nancy Trottier says:
My first husband, Kent Mortensen, shown here in the center between Father and Paul Herrera, was a stone mason by trade. He loved coming to Ambrose with me on Saturday mornings to cut stone and make crates. He also loved to eat the pancakes and burnt toast that Father fed to us, sometimes liberated from the priest’s dining room! Before Kent died from liver cancer in 1997, he talked often about Father and what it meant to him to learn how to cut letters in slate from Father Catich. I have always loved this photo and was glad to email it for the site. On this day these three were crating stone for Montana, I think.

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