Unlike earlier Indian boarding schools, the Intermountain School encouraged students to learn traditional arts. Students could choose from courses such as Art I, Painting, Indian Design, Indian Crafts, Leathercraft, Commercial Art, and various music classes.
Allan Houser, the famous Chiricahua Apache artist, was the artist-in-residence and art teacher at the school from 1951 - 1962. He painted a variety of murals, and taught painting, sculpture, and textile and graphic design.
Students also painted murals at the school, both on drywall and plaster walls. These, in addition to Houser's murals, were intended to remind students of home. Student drawings and other art were often published in course catalogs, the yearbook, and Smoke Signals. A store on campus allowed students to sell their work, while other students gained experience in running the store.