Museum to host artists on Saturday

The WaterWorks Art Museum will host two artists from its WAM (Women Artists Mentors) Exhibit for a pair of free closing receptions on Saturday at the art museum.

From 1-4 p.m., artists Maria Bennett Hock and Debra Keirce will hold a “community-involved art presentation” at the museum, located west of Miles City on Waterplant Road.

Attendees are encouraged to bring their families anytime during the presentation and join in the fun. Tables will be set up so visitors can enjoy a hands-on art experience with both artists, organizers said.

Then from 6-9 p.m. the public is invited to the art museum to toast the artists. Refreshments will be served and the artists will talk about their art and their WAM group. 

For more information call (406) 234-0635.

Women Artists Mentors started with a radio show. Five artists listening to the same show in different parts of the world resonated with what was being presented that day — forming your own artists’ mentoring group. 

Pursuing one’s path and a career in the visual arts can seem like a lonely endeavor. Essentially, each member of WAM is a one-woman show, creating art, marketing art, and doing all the daily tasks required to run a business. 

After listening to the concepts presented that day, they said they thought it would be nice to have someone to bounce ideas off. 

Wouldn’t it be nice to receive advice from those who might be more seasoned and have had more experiences in pursuing a career in the arts? 

One person reached out to another, the process repeated, and soon the group of five women had formed WAM. They are, Helen K. Beacham from Summerville, South Carolina; Hock from Cary, North Carolina; Keirce from Ashburn, Virginia; Kim Minichiello from Windermere, Florida; and Carrie Waller, who lives in Tokyo, Japan.

They meet once a month in video chats online and discuss a different topic each time. In May 2016 all five finally met in person in Venice, Italy, and committed to helping each other in art and business. It also resulted in lasting friendships.

The WAM Exhibit feature’s Hock’s oil paintings and Keirce’s miniatures, as well as her larger paintings.

Bennett’s paintings do not just let the viewer see a picture but tell a story as well. 

Hock says not only does she love creating art, but she also loves her life.

Keirce, a full-time award-winning international artist,  said her art expresses the places she’s been, the people she’s met and the challenges she’s faced. She specializes in small and miniature paintings. Part of her process for creating miniature fine art involves the use of magnifying lenses and close range binoculars, and she enjoys demonstrating those techniques.

“We’d love to see as many visitors as possible attend the events at the WaterWorks Art Museum on Saturday,” said Dixie Rieger, executive director of the art museum. “These two artitsts have never been to Montana. We need to show them, and all artists, how much we appreciate them exhibiting at WAM.” 

(Contact Denise Hartse at or (406) 234-0450.)