Wakáŋ Tipi Center Exhibits

St Paul, MN
Wakáŋ Tipi Awanyankapi envisioned and created Wakáŋ Tipi Center at the Bruce Vento Nature Sanctuary. This cultural and environmental center interprets the history and cultural significance of the sacred Wakáŋ Tipi cave and surrounding site from a distinctly Dakota perspective. The Wakáŋ Tipi Center and the exhibits were developed through a Dakota-led, community-engaged process.
Scope
We completed a Visitor Interpretive Experience Plan, followed by Schematic Design and Design Development for interior and exterior exhibits at the Wakáŋ Tipi Center. The exterior exhibits are throughout the nature sanctuary. Our team continued its collaborative approach to planning and exhibit development with content creation led by Dakota people serving on the Steering Committee and staff of Wakáŋ Tipi Awanyankapi.
Outcome
The exhibits connect people with the land as a Dakota sacred place and helps them understand it in the context of other places of historical and cultural significance for Dakota people in the region. “Teaching stones” made from recycled limestone feature Dakota language, custom art created by local Dakota artists, and audio clips featuring Dakota elders and community members. A teaching garden identifies plants in Dakota and English and features custom art by local Dakota artists. Exhibits inside the Center will teach visitors about Dakota knowledge related to stars and seasonal changes and engage visitors through hands-on, creative programming.
Returning Back Home Here interpretive panel
Dwelling Place of the Scared interpretive panel
Respect this place interpretive panel