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WICHITA STATE UNIVERSITY SCULPTURE TOUR

Albatross VI

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Albatross VI

Artist - Dustin Shuler
Born - 1948
Origin - America
Year Built - 1997

About the Artist: A native of Pittsburgh, Dustin Shuler attended the Carnegie Institute of Technology from 1967-70. Following his study, the artist moved to California where he had his first solo exhibition in 1977 at Chapman College in Orange. In the late 1970s, Shuler began "skinning" automobiles, by removing the outer metallic body of the auto and flattening it. His taxidermic approach to the automobile reached a grander scale with Death of an Era, 1980 (California State University), in which Shuler impaled a 1959 Cadillac with a twenty-foot nail. The result approximated an exercise in entomology with the automobile pinned like an unfortunate beetle. Appropriately, Pinned became the title of a 1982 work in Los Angeles. Shuler painted a 1960s Cessna aircraft to resemble the markings of a butterfly and then pinned it to a building using a twenty-foot nail.

Albatross IV, 1997, is a variation on Shuler's earlier theme, although the small golden plane now glides atop the spike instead of being pierced by it. The glider rests on the tip of the spike and responds to slight fluctuations in the air currents. Shuler has balanced the aircraft so that it may perform a number of aerial stunts, including a 360 degree roll.