We’re excited to welcome Montana Becker as a guest blogger! Montana’s childhood was filled with beautiful moments of creativity and exploration which led to her natural pull towards her artistic endeavors. Montana’s new gallery show titled ‘Prone to Wander’ will be featured in the 21 Step Gallery on Saturday, Apr 1 from 2-4pm. Her artwork will remain in the 21 Step Gallery through April 30, 2023.
My name is Montana Becker, I am honored to share my artistic journey with all of you. I have been making art since I was a young girl, although I didn’t recognize it at the time. My childhood had a significant influence on my artistic journey. I grew up in Princeton, Minnesota on a cattle farm. As a kid, I loved exploring the acreage of my farm and investigating the natural world. I vividly remember running around the farm, building forts, playing pretend with my brothers and exploring the world around me.
As I have grown, I have discovered that much of my artwork and artistic inquiries are linked to that part of my life. I have always used art as a way to explore the world and the questions I have about the world. Although my questions and subject matter have changed over time, my method of investigation has remained the same.
When I was young, I was always making things. I loved to sketch clothing designs, and I often attempted to make those designs into actual clothes. I also spent lots of time journaling and drawing all kinds of different things. It didn’t occur to me that any of the things I made could be considered art. I believe these childhood experiences were powerful because they enabled me to develop a curiosity about what was possible.
I believe artists often become so attached to creating a product that they fail to investigate the possibilities. Creating for creation’s sake is a powerful tool for generating ideas and discovering new methods. With all of that said, my 12 year old self didn’t recognize the power behind the work I was doing.
As I moved into high school I began taking art courses, particularly in the area of painting. My technical skills grew, but I never considered art as a path for my life. Upon graduating from high school I chose to attend the University of Minnesota Morris where I studied studio art and political science. In retrospect, I am not sure what prompted me to choose studio art as one of my majors. It wasn’t a field I had considered prior to attending college despite my interest in painting and fashion design. I had never considered fine art or what it entailed. I remember entering the art courses full of curiosity with no real end goal in mind, but after I began taking classes, I never looked back.
I fell in love with creating. I found that art has a way of communicating things that are hard to capture in words. It has a way of cutting through the noise and getting right to the heart of an issue. The seeds of these lessons were planted long before I attended art school, but studying art grew my curiosity into a passion.
My passion for creating is linked to my relationship with my creator. I grew up in an Assemblies of God Church and became a believer in Jesus Christ at a very young age. My faith has influenced my life and perspective more strongly than anything else. In my personal experience, making art has become a dialogue between myself and God. As I create, I experience God drawing close to me and gently speaking into my heart. When I come to the canvas with a question I often find him giving me a response.
My artistic practice is largely focused on non-objective abstraction, but my original inspiration stems from a fascination with landscape. My current body of work details my personal life journey and spiritual relationship with my creator.
Like many artists, my work has become an outlet for my innermost struggles, my deepest longings, and my greatest fears. I am very aware of the personal nature of my work. I believe that transparency and authenticity are what draw people together in unity. It is the knowledge of our differences and similarities that creates a rich community among people.
The purpose of my work is not to highlight my own experience, but rather to allow the viewer an opportunity to see themselves. While each human heart is exquisitely unique, we are also fundamentally the same. The way in which we experience the world chains us together and enables us to share with one another.
When I create I seek to share my heart and the tender love of the one that created it.
When I look back now, I know that my childhood was where it all began. Investigating God’s creation, and enjoying the beauty of what he made is what first inspired me to create. I had no idea where it would lead, but I’m so thankful for where it did lead. For those who are creating and don’t know why, keep creating. It’s one of the things you were made for, and one day you will know why.
You’re invited to meet Montana in person and view her artwork during these upcoming gallery events:
Meet the Artist on Tuesday, April 4th from 11:30-1:30
Artist Talk on Saturday, April 8 from 12:15-1:30
Attendees will learn about Montana as an artist and the creative process she uses in creating her artwork.