Sunday, May 30, 2010

Stephen Wall: Circuit-Venting the Norm in Native Arts with Techno-Dodems

Did you know that the word "totem" came from the word "dodem?"  In Ojibway, dodem refers "to the effigy or other symbol of a clan, family or social group that share a common ancestry or affiliation."  Totem was the name given them incorrectly by anthropologists.  I didn't know that, but sculpture artist Stephen Wall, Chippewa and Seneca, gave me the scoop and set me straight on that subject at the 2010 Native Treasures show in Santa Fe.

Father of Jemez Pueblo potters Kathleen and Marcus Wall, as well as Jemez sculptor Adrian Wall, Stephen Wall is a well-known artist in his own right and a member of of the faculty at IAIA in Santa Fe.  He has been creating jewelry and art for the better part of thirty years. 

He and his wife Laura Fragua-Cota developed the concept of the "Techno-Dodem" earlier in the decade.   In the artist's words, Techno-Dodems "represent the fusion of modern technology and neolithic sensibilities."   The incorporation of stone and woodwork with recycled components from phones, computers and other technological devices serves to create innovative, fun, and thought-provoking works of art.

WATCH a full interview with Stephen Wall about Techno-Dodems HERE:

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