David Hornbuckle carves masks of the seven clans of the Cherokee. No stranger to the forest, he begins by finding and felling the trees for his carvings. In a shop behind his house he carves masks out of buckeye, bell wood, butternut, wild cherry, and walnut.
Raised on Stillwell Branch, David Hornbuckle has lived on the Qualla Boundary most of his life. All of his eleven brothers and sisters have some sort of artistic talent. “God’s gift is what it is,” he says. His brother Butch, another fine carver, helped him learn about carving, and David began by carving small animals and bowls. He attended Cherokee Elementary School and Cherokee High School, where he studied woodcarving with Amanda Crowe. About ten years ago, he began carving the masks, most of which depict the seven clans of the Cherokee.
His masks are in great demand in Cherokee, and he sells them through the Museum of the Cherokee Indian, and various craft shops including Talking Leaves, the Medicine Man, and shops in Southwest Village and Saunooke Village.
David Hornbuckle prefers to give carving demonstrations in the shop behind his house. His fee is negotiable. He can accommodate small groups. Call ahead of time to arrange a visit and get directions to his workshop.