I've had the great pleasure of getting to know and learning from Anna McKee, a Seattle-based artist, over the last decade. As many geoscientists likely agree, there is an underlying beauty inherent in many of our research subjects. This certainly applies to glacial ice, and the added sense of time trapped in layers of snow and ice is a dimension ripe for sharing in media other than academic products.
Anna has spent time in Antarctica as a 2009-2010 National Science Foundation-sponsored artist with the US Antarctic Program (learn more about the Artists & Writers program), and also joined our NSF-funded ice coring expedition to Mt. Waddington, BC, Canada in July 2010.
Her work spans from small prints to large landscape paintings, and--most impressively--the incredible WAIS Reliquary. This installation literally represents the 68,000 years of information trapped in the WAIS Divide ice core from West Antarctica. Anna spent weeks in the University of Washington Isolab, taking a sample of the actual melted ice from every individual meter of the 3400 meter-long ice core (the 2nd deepest ice core ever drilled) and sealing the sample in a glass ampule!
Anna's next exhibition of the WAIS Reliquary will be at the Museum of Art, University of New Hampshire from January 25 - March 31, 2018.