Dakotah was born and raised in the pristine, sparsely populated town of Lander, Wyoming where mountains swallow rivers and the sun shines even when it’s 30 below. Prior to attending college, he enlisted in the United States Air Force and lived as far west as Anchorage, Alaska and as far east as Okinawa, Japan. While in the Air Force, Dakotah serviced radar jammers, antennae, hydraulic actuators, learned mechanical assemblage, and sat in the cockpit of F-15s. After this, he returned home and studied at the University of Wyoming where he earned a BFA in sculpture. Here, he created a fleet of drawing machines before deciding to pursue a master’s degree in fine art from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His thesis research led him to explore robotics, aquaponics, and an excess of convoluted systems. Currently, Dakotah enjoys living in Bloomington, Indiana.
The timelessness and endless perimeter of the cosmos disconnects it from our tactile world. Celestial bodies first seen only through a lens are later revered as destinations to study; territory to conquer; and resources to extract. Once untouchable objects become a driving force for technology and through it humanity. This work is an illustration of one such object valued for its precious material where contact has been made and compounds consumed and surfaces contaminated with life. What is left is a relic of what once was and an opportunity for what could be.
Materials: Recycled newspaper, glue, mylar, spray foam, plastic, steel fencing, aluminum, solar vacuum tubes, LED's, and moss
Shell of an Ordovician Kraken
Predating land animals, the ordovician period lasted from 485-443 million years ago and saw an explosion of life throughout the oceans of the world. This fossil belongs to a genus of invertebrate and early ancestor of the squid named the cameroceras. This ancient carnivor dominated the shallow seas of its time using its shell as a floatation device and grew up to 9 meters in length. This object has survived erosion for more than 440 million years and will likely remain beyond its wooden feretory.
Materials: Fossil, wood, screws