The Northcutt Steele Gallery at MSU Billings is pleased to present Building Icebergs, an exhibition of intermedia works created by Dr. Mara Pierce, MSUB Assistant Professor of Art Education, in collaboration with invited Montana artists and art educators.

Icebergs begin as single snowflakes that persist in continual co-construction until their accumulated structure assumes mass enough to move mountains. The form serves as the overarching metaphor for the exhibition.

Each professional artist and art educator may be understood to embody the idea of the minuscule snowflake in their individual origin. These entities then coalesce into communities, resulting in a tremendous collective agency akin to the force of an iceberg as a creative teaching/making community.

Building Icebergs visually manifests the relationships found in art making/learning/teaching. Firstly, Dr. Pierce practices the idea of co-construction – equally – producing artworks alongside invited colleague art educators as her collaborators. Participants include Kari Adams of Billings Central High School; Samantha Cole (Finch) of Shepherd High School; Anna Crow of Chief Dull Knife College; Megan Fetters of Lewis and Clark Middle School; Schools; Jon Kelly of Billings Senior High School; Casey O’Malley (December 2020 MSUB graduate); Breanna Shermer of Park City K-12; and Lacie Tucker of Blue Creek Elementary School. Secondly, Dr. Pierce collaborates with husband and artist Michael Largo to revisit and renew some traditional and contemporary Din4 visual practices as opportunities for learning. Finally, she brings visual exploration to the Indian Education for All policy, a Montana educational document that impacts art learning across the country.

Building Icebergs is sponsored in part by the Montana State University Billings Office of the Provost Arts & Humanities Grant.