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About

Artisan and Master Carver, Monte Spinker was born in East Dundee, Illinois. He began carving approximately 25 years ago and is totally self taught. He started out doing duck decoys for a hobby. When he retired from Prudential Insurance, he knew he needed to do something to supplement his income. Little did he know at the time, that the one thing he enjoyed most --- carving --- would provide the added income he needed.

He and his wife moved to Gun Barrel City, TX in 1998. At that time he came up with a birdhouse idea, (with some thanks to his wife) that is a handcarved face and the birds fly up the nose! This is what he has become most well known for. He copyrighted this idea in 1999 and his career in woodcarving truly began. He started out with just one fairly simply face and it grew from there. Today, he has designed close to a 100 different faces. You name it, he either…

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  • Male
  • Born on January 3
  • Joined July 11, 2008

Favorite materials

wood especially cedar

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About

Artisan and Master Carver, Monte Spinker was born in East Dundee, Illinois. He began carving approximately 25 years ago and is totally self taught. He started out doing duck decoys for a hobby. When he retired from Prudential Insurance, he knew he needed to do something to supplement his income. Little did he know at the time, that the one thing he enjoyed most --- carving --- would provide the added income he needed.

He and his wife moved to Gun Barrel City, TX in 1998. At that time he came up with a birdhouse idea, (with some thanks to his wife) that is a handcarved face and the birds fly up the nose! This is what he has become most well known for. He copyrighted this idea in 1999 and his career in woodcarving truly began. He started out with just one fairly simply face and it grew from there. Today, he has designed close to a 100 different faces. You name it, he either has it, or can design one you want as a special order. His birdhouses have become so well known, that even people from China have tried to copy them. These are unfortunate replicas, not made from wood, and most importantly not made and signed by Monte, the original designer.

In March of 2006, Monte suffered his second major heart attack. After his recovery, he decided to pursue his dream of carving Jesus and the Crucifixion. He began this project in October of 2006 and completed it in March of 2007. This was a labor of love for him to do.

Everything on the sculpture is carved from wood, with the exception of the thorns in the crown --- which are real and each one glued individually into place and the nails in Jesus hands and feet. The nails he took and ground them square to depict what he felt would be the most accurate for the time period. When you listen to him talk, he says one of the hardest thing he had to do was to hammer those nails into Jesus.

Jesus stands 4'10" tall and was carved by hand. The cross itself is from aromatic cedar and is 7 feet tall and 4-1/2 feet wide. He wanted the cross to be very simple and not ornate in any way.

Monte feels God has truly blessed him with this wonderful talent. And for the last 10 years he has been able to make a living from his carving. This project was a way for him to give thanks to God for all his blessings.

This cross was donated to his church, St. Peter's Lutheran, in Gun Barrel city, and now hangs there for everyone to enjoy.

Monte also does many other items. He makes beautiful crosses, many of which are made from mesquite and inlaid with turquoise or abalone. He can even personalize them with a picture of a special loved one. These make great gifts for people.

Monte has also does beautiful Santa's, carvings in found wood and cypress knees. He has begun working with a man who does tours for the Mayan ruins and Monte is carving replicas of the Mayan artifacts.

Monte takes great pride in his workmanship. He welcomes special orders. Please feel free to contact him for any of your special needs.

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