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Dakotah Konicek

Bloomington, IN 47404, U.S.A.
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Artist Bio

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 teaching at Indiana University in Bloomington as a Visiting Assistant Professor.

Artist Statement

My practice generally involves searching for coincidentally matching parts from disassembled objects. I accumulate and tinker with a multitude of objects until the parts begin to find their own structure. This process continues until a new function emerges. It is this newly derived purpose that I am most interested in. I find that this organization strategy mimics processes in the natural world. I often begin thinking of collected action/reaction events as individual organs belonging to a larger system at work. As a consumer of contemporary technology, I am charmed by its potentials yet remain skeptical of unintended widespread consequences. As an artist, I aim to create works that celebrate both positions regarding technology. I seek to create moments of contradiction and to ask questions about the balance of efficiencies within systems.



2015  MFA, Carnegie Mellon University​, Sculpture and Installation, Pittsburgh, PA
2012  BFA, University of Wyoming​, Sculpture, Laramie, WY
2005  Military Education, United States Air Force, ​F-15 Avionic Test Station and Aircraft Component Apprenticeship, Wichita Falls, TX, Electronic Principles Training, Biloxi, MS

Professional Appointments:

2016 - now     Visiting Assistant Professor​, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
2016              Adjunct Assistant Professor​, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA
2015 -2016    Adjunct Instructor​, Pre-College, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA
2015 -2016    3D Studio Technician​, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA
2012 -2015    Graduate Teaching Assistant​, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA

Other Professional Experience:

2014              Tough Art Residency, Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh
2013-2014     Graduate Student Assembly Representative, Carnegie Mellon University
2012              Gallery Internship, Visual Arts Galleries, University of Wyoming
2011-2012      Work Study Wood and Steel Shop Monitor, University of Wyoming
2010-2012      President of the Wyoming Sculpture Society
2004-2008      Active Duty F-15 Avionics Journeyman, United States Air Force

Selected Exhibitions:

2018   The Millenial Show, TEJAS Gallery, Dayton, OH

            ANTHROPOCENE​, Ann Street Gallery, Newburgh, NY

            SOAAD Faculty Exhibition​, Grunwald Gallery of Art, Bloomington, IN
2017    High Art Billboard Project,​ A​rts Council of Indianapolis, Indianapolis, IN
            STATIONTOSTATION​, ​Grunwald Gallery of Art, Bloomington, IN

2016    Re:NEW Festival Juried Exhibition​, ​Pittsburgh, PA
            CREATE 2016​, ​Fairmont, Pittsburgh, PA
            APPed Metaphors​, The Edward J & Helen Jane Morrison Gallery, Morris, MN

2015    MFA Thesis Show​, Miller Gallery, Pittsburgh, PA
2014    Sweet Nothings​, The Chocolate Moose, Pittsburgh, PA
            Year in Art​, Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
            Niche Inheritance​, Future Tenant, Pittsburgh, PA
            Winners Wanted​, Rivers Casino, Pittsburgh, PA
            Day of the Painter​, Boom Concepts Gallery, Pittsburgh, PA
            Drawing Arcade​, Miller Gallery, Pittsburgh, PA
            Gross Domestic Product​, The Mine Factory, Pittsburgh, PA
2013    Juan Media Festival​, Incheon Soccer Stadium, Incheon, South Korea

            Live Archive​, Crucible Building, Pittsburgh, PA
2012    Senior BFA Exhibition​, Visual Arts Gallery, Laramie, WY

            37​th​ Annual Juried Student Exhibition​, Wyoming Heritage Center, Laramie, WY

2011    Metal Fabulous Exhibition​, Gallery 211, Laramie, WY
            Small Wonders Exhibition​, Fine Arts Up Gallery, Laramie, WY
            36​th​ Annual Juried Student Exhibition​, Wyoming Heritage Center, Laramie, WY
            16​th​ Annual Salon de Refuse​, Fine Arts Up Gallery, Laramie, WY

2010    35​th​ Annual Juried Student Exhibition​, Wyoming Heritage Center, Laramie, WY
            15​th​ Annual Salon de Refuse​, Fine Arts Up Gallery, Laramie, WY

2009    Student Juried, Fine Arts Up Gallery, University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY

Awards and Grants:

2016  Top 10 Art + Technology Project of the Year, ​Create ​Festival 2016 ​Pittsburgh PA
2015  GuSH Graduate Research Funding Grant​, Carnegie Mellon University
          Nominee for Daedalus Foundation Fellowship​, Carnegie Mellon University
2014  Frank-Ratchye Fund for Art @ the Frontier grant,​ The Studio for Creative Inquiry

          Dean’s Grant, ​Carnegie Mellon University
          School of Art Scholarship, ​Carnegie Mellon University
2013  Konrad and Gisela Weis Fellowship,​ Carnegie Mellon University
2012  Honorable Mention​, 37th Annual Juried Student Exhibition, UW

          David Reif Sculpture Award​, 37th Annual Juried Student Exhibition, UW

2011  Walter Saunders Study Abroad Scholarship, ​University of Wyoming
          UniWyo Federal Credit Union Distinction Scholarship, ​UW

          Conrad Schwiering Memorial Scholarship, ​UW

          Office of the President Purchase Award​, 16th Annual Salon De Refuse, UW

          Office of the President Purchase Award​, 36th Annual Juried Exhibition, UW

2010  Office of the President Purchase Award​, 35th Annual Juried Exhibition, UW

2009  Best 3D piece in show​, Foundations Student Juried Show, UW


2016     Guest Critic, ​Indiana University MFA Sculpture Seminar, Bloomington, IN

             Artist Talk: ​TechShop, Pittsburgh, PA

2015     Artist Talk with Q&A,​ Miller Gallery, Pittsburgh, PA
2014     Carnegie Mellon School of Art Graduate Presentations​, Pittsburgh, PA
             Workshop: Technology in the Garden ”Gardweeno”​, Community garden     project. Braddock, PA
             Guest Critic, ​Simulation and Perception course, Carnegie Mellon School of Art, Pittsburgh, PA
             Artist Talk​: Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, PA
             Guest Lecture for studio/seminar​, “Amateur,” Carnegie Mellon School of Art
             Presentation: DRAW2014​: Why Draw Now? Miller Gallery, Pittsburgh, PA

2013     Commissioned drawing ​Shy​. Published in “The Oxford Handbook of Sound   and Image in Digital Media.”
             Carnegie Mellon School of Art Graduate Student Presentations​, Kresge Theater, Pittsburgh, PA
             Artist Talk, ​Sculpture Center, Cleveland, OH

             Artist Talk, ​OSHER, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA

2012     Carnegie Mellon School of Art Graduate Presentations​, Pittsburgh, PA

             Workshop: High School Art Intensive​, Laramie, WY

Technical Abilities:


Woodworking: ​Extensive knowledge of machinery and equipment including but not limited to: saws (band, compound miter, table, radial arm), jointer, planer, router, drill press, lathe, milling, and sanders (edge, belt, drum, disc).
Metalworking: ​Experienced with MIG, TIG, Arc, and Oxy-Acetylene welding, casting of ferrous and non-ferrous metals, plasma cutting, various metal saws and abrasives, soldering, brazing, etching, cold and hot patina application processes, and blacksmithing.
Emerging technologies: ​Familiar with 3D printing, CNC routing, physical computing/robotics, and laser cutting/engraving.
Digital: ​Proficient with Rhinoceros 3D CAD, Javascript, programming using Arduino, MAX, P5.js, and Processing platforms, Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, Premier, Word, PowerPoint, and Excel.
Electronics: ​Skilled in electronic soldering, wiring, designing, and troubleshooting electronic circuits, working with various breakout boards, sensors, and actuators for Arduino, teensy, and custom circuits and kinetics.
Ceramics: ​wheel throwing, hand-building, slip casting, glazing, and firing.
Other assorted artistic skills: ​vacuum forming, papermaking, drawing, painting, basic textiles, printmaking, aquaponics, hydroponics, terrarium construction, working with clay, rubber, wax, ceramic slip, plaster, resin, alginate, glues, concrete, and found objects.