(1920 - 2012)
John Barney (Jack) Weaver was active/lived in Illinois, Montana, District Of Columbia, British Columbia / Canada. John Weaver is known for monumental commemorative sculpture.
Biography from the Archives of askART
The following biography is based on information provided to AskART.com by Kirby Lambert, Curator of Collections, Montana Historical Museum in Helena, Montana:
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Sculptor John Weaver, working in bronze, is known primarily for his monumental sculptures but has created a wide range of subjects including life-size portraits of distinguished persons such as Jacqueline Kennedy and Mrs. Lyndon B. Johnson in the Hall of First Ladies Building in Washington D.C. He has also executed traditional western subjects--cowboys, Indians, and horses.
Among his major commissions are the Charles Russell bronze at Statuary Hall in Washington, monumental memorials at Butte and Helena, Montana, and portraits busts of President Harry Truman and General Douglas MacArthur.
He has also created dioramas of which several showing mining and lumbermen scenes are in the Historical Society Museum of Helena. He was a student assistant to sculptor Albin Polasek on the colossal Jan Masaryk equestrian monument on the University of Chicago mall. He also did commissions for the Montana State Capitol and Montana State University.
Weaver was born in Anaconda, Montana in 1920 and studied art with his father, "Pop" Weaver, also known as "Buck" and "John," who was teaching at the local high school. "Pop" Weaver was a distinguished painter and sculptor of silver-mining camp genre, and in addition to teaching high-school art, he was a local newspaper illustrator. He and his son collaborated on a nativity scene for St. Luke's Church in River Forest, Illinois, which brought them considerable praise.
John Weaver studied at the Art Institute of Chicago with Albin Polasek and Emil Zettler, earning the Albert B. Kuppenheimer Scholarship and graduating in 1946. He then taught figure drawing and sculpture at the Layton School of Art in Milwaukee from 1946 to 1951. That year, he also did sculpted reliefs of water scenes, each about thirty-two feet long, for the Fox-Bay theater in Wisconsin. During this time, he built a solar home for himself, which maintained heat at 80 degrees during the Wisconsin winters.
For five years until 1961, he was Curator at the Montana Historical Society where he participated in the making of diaramas of Montana history, especially the lumber industry. He then spent six years as Natural History Sculptor for the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C.
In 1955, he was selected as Montana's State Sculptor, although he settled in Hope, British Columbia, Canada in the late 1970s. In Canada, he completed a monumental work titled "The Stake," which depicts pioneering figures and resides in the Orientation Gallery of the Provincial Museum of Alberta in Edmonton. Weaver served as resident sculptor there, after leaving the Smithsonian in Washington D.C.
Artist statement: "I was trained in my early years by my father, John Bruce Weaver, a painter, sculptor and teacher. This experience along with later study with Albin Polasek and Emil Zettler, as well as work with scientists at the Smithsonian Institution have made me think of Art as a way of life, a profession which should serve people, not as an ivory retreat of self-fulfillment.
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