Skip to Content

News Release — November 15, 2010

Buck Winn

New film documents the history and versatility of Wimberley artist Buck Winn

Film screening at the Wittliff Collections presented by the Hays County Historical Commission


SAN MARCOS, Texas—On Tuesday, December 7, the Hays County Historical Commission and the Wittliff Collections will screen a 60-minute documentary about Wimberley artist Buck Winn on the seventh floor of the Alkek Library at Texas State University-San Marcos. Free and open to the public, the event includes a 5:30 p.m. reception before the 6:15 screening.

The film, Larger Than Life: The Story of Buck Winn, chronicles the remarkable talent of James Buchanan “Buck” Winn (1905–1979), a Texas-born artist whose work captures the very spirit of the Southwest and serves as testament to the region’s cultural and historical evolution.

Winn was an internationally recognized painter, sculptor, inventor, muralist, and architectural artist. In 1935, he painted a mural at Dallas’s Highland Park Theatre telling the story of La Salle’s arrival on the Texas coast. Winn also worked with Eugene Savage and others to create murals in the Hall of State for the 1936 Texas Centennial. In 1946, Winn designed the United States three-cent postage stamp commemorating Texas statehood.

Closer to home, Winn created architectural sculptures at Aquarena Springs in San Marcos and the large carved ceramic-and-glass bas-relief on the side of Flowers Hall at Texas State.

The Wittliff owns three 28-foot-long by 6-foot-high painted panels depicting the history of cattle ranching in the Southwest. They are part of a 280-foot canvas mural—at one time the largest in the world—Winn painted for the Pearl Brewery in San Antonio in 1950. The Wittliff’s three sections are awaiting restoration and will be displayed in the Texas State library.

In all, Winn completed more than 50 projects, many of which were the first of their kind in material usage and size. Winn’s works can still be found in bank buildings, libraries, theaters, and on university campuses throughout the region, although a substantial portion of his large public works have been lost as buildings were razed for new development.

Larger Than Life, directed by Richard Kidd and produced by Kate Johnson, was shot in 18 locations in the Southwest and is the first complete coverage of Winn’s major work. More information about the film is available on the Hays County Historical Commission website: