(Fremont County, WY) – Between 2005 and 2013, sculptures were installed at Lander Valley High School, St. Stephens, Wind River, and in Thermopolis at Hot Springs High School.
What some may not know is they were all created by the same artist, Deak Dollard.
Aside from being an artist, he has worn many hats over the years such as an educator, law enforcement officer, and smokejumper just to name a few. He currently works for the Bureau of Land Management in St. George, Utah.
Originally from Lander, Deak grew up working at the Eagle Bronze Foundry in the summers where he learned how to mold and cast sculptures.
The first of the four installed at the schools was the tiger in Lander, and then the bobcat in Thermopolis. The two eagle heads in medicine wheels placed above building entrances at St. Stephens came next, and lastly the cougar in front of Wind River High School.
When asked if he had a favorite, Deak shared it’s hard to pick.
“The one I just finish is always great, but then I’m always trying to better myself.”
The biggest hangup is the cost, he continued.
“You can’t put a price tag on a sculpture for a community. They incorporate history and create memories. When you put up a bronze sculpture people are going to ride it.”
He recently completed one in northern Arizona and with a chuckle said he’s always looking for the next.