James Castle
American, 1899-1977
251 followers
Emerging
Represented by up-and-coming galleries.
Collected by a major museum
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Selected exhibitions
2017
Independent New York – 2017,
Fleisher/Ollman
2016
Measurably Long Kool,
Fleisher/Ollman
Tomio Koyama Gallery at Art Fair Tokyo 2016,
Tomio Koyama Gallery

James Castle was a self-taught artist who was born deaf and never learned to sign or read or write language in a conventional manner. His drawings, always executed in intimate scale, are expressions of his introspection and life experiences. To create his work, Castle used found materials like scraps from his parents’ general store—such as matchbooks, packing paper, calendars, register receipts, and grocery cartons—and created marks using stove soot mixed with saliva, and a sharpened stick as a stylus. Though he was considered illiterate, Castle often used textual elements in his compositions, taking the form of numbers, hybrid letters, or symbols. More common subjects included his immediate surroundings and daily encounters.