Prophet Isaiah's Second Coming House
(1947 – 2020)
Prophet Isaiah Robertson was born and raised in Jamaica before coming to America after a brief stint in Canada, where he had a prophecy of the Rapture. He settled in Niagara Falls, New York. Through a vision from God, he was directed to offer a source of healing to the world, so he built a 25-foot wooden cross at the head of his driveway. He soon covered the cross and eventually the exterior and interior of his home with brightly painted wooden cut-outs of geometric iconography with repeating themes to express a Christian view of the end of time.
The artwork created by Prophet Isaiah has been well documented by curious observers and art journalists. Although it’s difficult to compete with The Falls, Prophet Isaiah’s colorful vision draws visitors daily. The cross and artwork offer an oasis of peace and the site is beloved in the neighborhood.
In January 2020, acclaimed art environment photographer Fred Scruton approached Kohler Foundation after the death of the artist. Scruton and Prophet Isaiah had formed a long friendship over a decade as Scruton repeatedly returned to the site to document the artist’s work. As a result, KFI is privy to a treasure trove of images which document the artist’s process and work and will be invaluable to the conservation team.
In November 2021, Kohler Foundation has contracted B.R. Howard & Associates of Carlisle, PA for the conservation of the work. The art has deteriorated significantly over the years due to its exposure to the harsh elements of New York winters causing substantial paint and structural losses. After full documentation and evaluation was completed, the conservators dismantled the large pieces to conserve in their workspace. This measure saved the cross from another devastating New York winter.
The site will return to its glory in late 2022. The future stewards of the site will be Niagara Falls National Heritage Area. They plan to host a variety of programs and events for the community and art environment enthusiasts.