Waterfall Man

© John Buck, 1981, from the Collection of the Castellani Art Museum of Niagara University

Waterfall Man, 1981

John Buck   —  
  • American
  • 1946

  • 2002:043
  • acrylic on wood
  • 96 x 72 x 4 in.
  • Collection of the Castellani Art Museum of Niagara University, Gift of Martin Sklar, 2002
“John Buck is a master—no, a wizard—with wood. It is likely that he can carve virtually any object that he might conjure in his imagination. His deft ability at whittling form out of a block of jelutong is legendary. But he blanches a bit when his work is compared to folk art or outsider art, which it inevitably, is. Buck's brilliant kinetic works share something with whirligigs, tobacco-store Indians, and wooden mechanical toys.” —Who is John Buck? by Linda Tesner The artist is well known for his carved wood and bronze sculptures and monumental woodblock prints. In recent years, he has turned his attention to creating ever-more-complex mechanical kinetic sculptures. Buck is fascinated by the cultural imagery surrounding his two homes (one in Bozeman, Montana, and the other on the Big Island of Hawaii), current events, popular culture and the irony inherent in world history. This collected visual vocabulary weaves through his sculptural and print works and is captured in the symbolism of Waterfall Man and, perhaps, its relationship to Niagara Falls. Selected excerpts from Who Is John Buck? by Linda Tesner, published by Marquand Books, 2014 and johnbuck.com.