Issuu on Google+

Wendell Castle A Catalogue Raisonné 1958–2012


2


3


4


Wendell Castle A Catalogue RaisonnÊ 1958–2012

Emily e vans Eerdmans Essays by Glenn Adamson

Jane Adlin

the artist book foundation New York

london

hong kong

Dave Barry


00

| For Wendell Castle’s Raisonné Dave Barry

00

| Target Practice: The Work of Wendell Castle Glenn Adamson

00

| Wendell Castle Now Jane Adlin

00

| Catalogue Raisonné Emily evans Eerdmans

00

| About the Catalogue Key to the Catalogue

00

| Part 1: 1958–1961

000

| Part 2: 1962–1976

000

| Part 3: 1977–1989

000

| Part 4: 1990–2004

000

| Part 5: 2005–2012

000

| Acknowledgments

000

| Chronology

000

| Selected Exhibition History

000

| Collections

000

| Academic Appointments, Memberships, and Awards

000

| Media Films, Videotapes, and Published Work

000

| Selected Bibliography

000

| Index

000

| Photography Credits


8


9


10


For Wendell Castle’s Raisonné Dave Barry

When my friend Wendell Castle asked me, over dinner one night in Miami, if I would be willing to contribute to his raisonné, I did not hesitate for a moment. “What’s a raisonné?” I asked. He explained that it was a critical essay that would appear in a catalogue of his works of art. This led me to ask Wendell a follow-up question, specifically, how much had he had to drink? Because if there’s one topic I seriously don’t know anything about, it’s art. My formal art studies ended in fourth grade, when I was a student at Wampus Elementary School in Armonk, New York. Every week the art teacher, Mrs. Rockefeller, would come around to our classroom with a rolling cart full of art supplies. She would distribute these supplies to us students, and we would spend about an hour attempting to convert them into art. I always failed. I was terrible at drawing. I always drew the same thing, week after week, year after year: a house with two windows, a door, a chimney with smoke coming out, and a sun overhead. Because I was incapable of showing proportion (if that’s the term I’m looking for), the sun appeared to be about eight feet away from the house, in addition to which it was shooting out sun rays (represented by straight lines) so that any human who actually lived in this hellish world I was creating would have died instantly from the radiation. Fortunately this did not happen, because I could not draw humans. Houses and suns, that was my entire repertoire. My point is that I have no artistic talent, unlike Wendell Castle, who as you may recall is the topic of this raisonné. Not only does Wendell make beautiful art, but his art is also functional furniture. This impresses me deeply, because another thing I cannot do, in addition to draw, is make things. After graduating from Wampus Elementary School, I went on to Harold C. Crittenden Junior High, where I took wood shop, and I was no better at that than I had been at art. This is the truth: I spent all of seventh grade making a single project, which was a cutting board for my mom. And when I say “a cutting board,” what I mean is, “a board.” It was really just a short length of lumber. There was no way to distinguish it from any other piece of lumber, except that I gave it to my mom to cut things on.Yet making it took me an entire year. So when I look at the amazingly fanciful and swoopy works of furniture art that Wendell produces, I am in awe. I wonder how he makes them; I wonder how he even thinks of them. He’s a real treasure, Wendell is, and I am deeply honored that he asked me that night to contribute to his raisonné. Although I suspect he regretted it, once he sobered up. Dave Barry Miami, Florida February 2012

11


Wendell Castle: Now Jane Adlin

1. For a discussion of Peter York’s commentary on the hierarchy of “wall power” and “floor power,” see “Floor power: Move over contemporary art (‘wall power’), DesignArt is taking to the floor,” Wallpaper (October 2008), p. 160. 2. Wendell Castle, quoted in Rockin’, exh. cat., Barry Friedman Gallery, New York (New York, 2010). p. 7. 3. Jane Adlin’s conversation with Wendell Castle took place on February 9, 2012.

Wendell Castle, Gannett Staircase, 1976. Black walnut, h: 25 feet (7.62 m). Current location TK?

“All things noble are as difficult as they are rare,” said the Dutch seventeenth-century philosopher and harbinger of enlightened modernity, Baruch Spinoza (1632–1677). It is a particularly pertinent idea when looking at the lengthy career of contemporary designer and innovator Wendell Castle, one of America’s most influential makers of sculptural furniture. From the seminal Stool Sculpture (cat. I.xx) of 1959 to his dynamic rocking chairs of 2010, Castle has evolved a distinctive personal style, stretching the limits of his materials and imposing a new formal language on furniture. Always recognizable in its function, Castle’s work is best described as abstract and organic sculpture, coming with a floor power,¹ an undeniable physical presence equal to that of any of the twentieth century’s most important artwork. Over the past six decades, Castle has created a body of work reflecting his personal view that the worlds of art, craft, and design are all aspects of a single process.² It is a process of conceptualizing, drawing, forming, and indeed making furniture that defies previously imposed art historical categorizations but that keeps them all in balance. During a recent conversation with Wendell Castle at his Scottsville, New York studio, he reflected on where he sees himself as an artist now and his vision for the future.³ With a consistency and focus spanning nearly 60 years, and a legacy well known to curators and collectors, I couldn’t help but ask what still brings him to the studio every day. To that, Castle eagerly responded that as soon as he finishes breakfast he wants to be in his studio. “When I get there, I’m going to have fun. It’s not going to be a boring day. If I’m carving, I might only carve for a half hour, and then take a break and draw for a little while. And then maybe model for a little while, and maybe I’ll glue some things for a while. Then maybe I’ll go back and carve.” Looking around the studio as he spoke, I saw ambitious new work in progress—complex volumes being joined, a staircase being resolved—and had to note that this idyllic, and seemingly simple approach to his work was in fact, one of the keys to his longevity as a creator. I was curious to know how some projects, past or present, were more challenging than others and what propelled him into new design territory. He responded by saying that in the past, it was his commissioned work that often fell into the category of being most challenging, especially requests to assemble an entire room. However, even with these commissions, it could be that he found two or three of the pieces really interesting but another in the ensemble, a bookshelf, for example, not. His favorite furniture form, the chair, is different. It is a singular form, with inherent challenges, that for Castle, will never grow familiar. As he put it, “Since you sit in a chair, it immediately becomes an intimate object, one that you constantly test by sitting and thus have a relationship with. You don’t ever test a table by putting a cup of coffee on it while making it.” Most important for Castle, a chair offers more sculptural opportunities. His seats often resemble voluptuous contemporary torsos or evoke classical Greek statues. Castle has produced a myriad of chairs during his career—arm-

37


chairs, side chairs, stools, rockers, chaises, two- and three-seaters, and chairs incorporating tables and lights. Clearly, the chair has become his most animated and least self-conscious form, and he is continually inspired by it. Early inspiration for Castle came from a how-to column in a magazine that described the process of sawing, gluing, and sanding variously sized cross-sections of pine to fashion duck decoys.Years later, he discovered Leonard Baskin’s carved wood process: “He had glued wood together into a giant rectangular block and then carved. I thought, if only he had read the article about the duck decoy, he could have saved a huge amount of wood and a huge amount of work. I thought, well, since he didn’t figure that out—I’ve figured that out, and I’ll use it. So that’s where my laminations came from.”⁴ The notion that economically stacking shaped bits of pine could be used to create dynamic and intriguing shapes, was an epiphany for Castle and a moment that would determine much of the character of his working life. Over time, this method of stack lamination gave him greater freedom to develop an intricate vocabulary of forms and volumes with continually evolving possibilities. “I think

38

Wendell Castle, Coromell, 2010. Stained mahogany, 36½ x 56½ x 27½ inches (92.7 x 143.5 x 69.9 cm). Private collection, United States.

4. Wendell Castle, quoted in “Wendell Castle: Sculptures You Can Sit On,” Katy Donoghue, Whitewall (Fall 2008), p. 91.


Wendell Castle, Moby Dick, 2009. Stained cherry, 52½ x 77 x 37 inches (133.4 x 195.6 x 94 cm). Private collection, Switzerland.

5. Castle made the switch to furniture in 1963 while he was making Stool (II.xx [#90]). It was originally conceived as a sculpture. 6. Catalogue of Brancusi exhibition, Brummer Gallery, New York, November 1926 (n.p.).

that one of the things that is consistent is that when I stopped making sculpture and decided I would concentrate fully on furniture, it was because I felt it could be the same as sculpture.⁵ It had all those qualities. And that made it okay for me to do. Nowadays, sculpture can be almost anything, but I still like to think of it as having volumes and voids and all those things that are probably Brancusi-based thinking.” Surely, Castle has been influenced by the sculptural theory and formal language of Constantin Brancusi (1876–1957). The artist’s approach to his work, often incorporating repetitive motifs, rethought, re-considered, and refined, continue to serve as a model for Castle. Brancusi’s axiom “What is real is not the external form, but the essence of things,” seems often to echo in the work of Wendell Castle.⁶ When asked about other artists whose work inspired him Castle responded, “Henry Moore and Jean Arp. I like organic things, soft-looking things.” During the last decade, especially since 2005, Castle has revisited old assumptions with vigor, producing several new bodies of work in a remarkably mature style of Apollonian forms and confident

39


abandon. In cantilevered tables and volumetric chairs, Castle’s signature trademarks of careful asymmetry and composition of volumes have been exuberantly reinvented. The new furniture reflects his ongoing exploration of organic shapes in wood and fiberglass and introduces other materials such as nickel, stainless steel, bronze, concrete, and aluminum. Traces of his design vocabulary are evident in the work, but nothing seems recycled. New not renewed, these pieces have a freedom unencumbered by earlier considerations of the marketplace and the art world. His pierced volumes and frequent use of negative space express a play of freedom and restraint. Contours and lines intersect or join, feel expansive or encompassing; he virtually eliminates prescribed boundaries, pushing the size and form of his designs as far as he can without losing all functionality.

40

Wendell Castle, Nirvana, 2007. Polychromed fiberglass, 34ž x 62 3/8 x 33 5/8 inches (88.3 x 158.4 x 85.4 cm). Susan Nam, Seoul, South Korea.


Fig. 1. Wendell Castle, A New Environment, 2012. Stained ash with oil finish, fiberglass, flokati carpet, dimensions variable. Current location?

Castle’s most recent work is among his most ambitious to date and is still in the process of being built. His motivation grows with exciting elements of risk in every new work. At the same time, there is a recognizable relationship and consistency of quality going back to Castle’s earliest work. True to his origins, he has returned to stack-laminated woodworking and consistently devotes equal attention to the concept and execution of every piece, from a small side table to a complex masterwork. At the moment, Castle is straddling just that—he is mining his vast reserves of ideas and experience while taking a leap forward toward possibilities and innovation. He has conceived a monumental environment—a two-story indoor structure—consisting of an irregularly rising and sloping iron floor from which all of the furniture will grow. Each chair, table, and lamp will be supported by one leg only (A New Environment, 2012, fig. 1) (cat.V.xx). As Castle explained, “I always feel like an explorer, staking out a new territory. Each work is another fence-post defining the terrain.” He continued, “This proj-

41


48


Part 1 1958–1961 As a student at the University of Kansas, Wendell Castle studied sculpture and industrial design, revealing an early interest in both form and function. During his graduate studies for a Master of Fine Arts degree, Castle merged the two on several occasions, which resulted in some of his most compelling pieces. His proclivity toward experimentation was already clearly manifest, and he approached the challenges of limited equipment and materials with creative aplomb. Walnut gunstock blanks sourced from a nearby factory were used for his main body of sculpture and informed its organic vocabulary. Castle’s earliest furniture pieces show his awareness of contemporary designers such as Finn Juhl and Carlo Mollino, but with the landmark Scribe Stool—also made from gunstock blanks—he created a work distinctly his own. By 1959, Castle was exhibiting at local galleries and entering competitions and had launched his professional career as an artist.

49


I.xx  ((ID #A144))

Untitled Materials  Unknown Dimensions  Unknown Date  1950s Signed  Unknown Provenance  Unknown Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is unassigned.

I.xx  ((ID #197))

Sculpture Materials  Walnut Dimensions  Unknown Date  c. 1958 Signed  Unknown Provenance  Unknown Exhibition History  Sixth

Midwest Biennial Exhibition: Painting, Sculpture, Graphic Arts, Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha, NE, 1960

Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is 197.

I.xx  ((ID #242))

Walnut Sculpture

#A144

#197

Materials  Walnut Dimensions  h: 55 in. (139.7 cm) Date  c. 1958 Signed  Unknown Provenance  Unknown Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Alastair Gordon, Wendell Castle: Wandering Forms – Works from 1959–1979 (New York: Gregory R. Miller & Co., 2012). Comments  Studio

inventory number is 242.

I.xx  ((ID #A24))

Untitled Materials  Walnut Dimensions  h: 30 in. (76.2 cm) Date  c. 1958 Signed  Unknown Provenance  Unknown Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is unassigned. #242 #242

50


#A29

#160

#163

I.xx  ((ID #242))

I.xx  ((ID #160))

I.xx  ((ID #163))

Untitled

Walnut Sculpture

Mahogany Sculpture

Materials  Walnut

Materials  Walnut

Materials  Mahogany

Dimensions  Unknown

Dimensions  48 ×

Date  c. 1958

Date  c. 1958

Date  c. 1958

Signed  Unknown

Signed  No

Signed  Unknown

Provenance  Unknown

Provenance  Wendell

Exhibition History  Unknown

NY

Exhibition History  Unknown

Literature  Unknown

Exhibition History  Unknown

Comments  Studio

Gordon, Wendell Castle:Wandering Forms – Works from 1959–1979 (New York: Gregory R. Miller & Co., 2012).

Literature  Alastair Gordon, Wendell Castle: Wandering Forms – Works from 1959–1979 (New York: Gregory R. Miller & Co., 2012).

inventory number is 247.

I.xx  ((ID #A29))

Castle and Nancy Jurs, Scottsville,

Literature  Alastair

Comments  Studio

Untitled

30 in. (121.9 × 76.2 cm)

Dimensions  h: 72 in. (182.9 cm)

Provenance  Unknown

Comments  Studio

inventory number is 163.

inventory number is 160.

Materials  Copper Dimensions  Unknown Date  c. 1958 Signed  Unknown Provenance��� Destroyed Exhibition History  Sculpture

in Wood and Copper by Wendell Castle, Little Gallery Frame Shop, Westwood, KS, July–August 1960

Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is unassigned.

51


138


Part 111 1977–1989 In dramatic counterpoint to Castle’s biomorphic

Part 111: 1977–1989

work, his production during this time plumbed a multiplicity of references and explored the possibilities of ultimate refinement of form, materials, and finish. Castle’s national reputation attracted tremendous talent to his workshop, including the master inlayers and carvers who were essential to realizing the virtuoso trompe l’oeil series. Unlike the stacklaminated pieces whose ultimate form unfolds while being sculpted, the design for these pieces was mapped out definitively from the beginning. The challenge or adventure here was to achieve perfection, as there was no room to conceal mistakes. For the series, antiques were used as models, whether from life or taken from a book. Castle’s first compositions played with various everyday items arranged on tabletops, such as hats with briefcases and a grocery bag with a baguette. He then progressed the series to replicate only furniture that was familiar and immediately recognizable, as in the case of the Hepplewhite-style chair in Coat on Chair (III.xx [#511]). This succeeded in taking the viewer’s eye even longer to discover that it had been “fooled.” In 1980, Castle was invited to comment on furniture in the collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, which resulted in the publication The Fine Art of the Furniture Maker. He was impressed by the exceptionally fine furnishings of Art Deco masters, such as Émile-Jacques Ruhlmann (1879–1933) and Süe et Mare (1875–1968 and 1885–1932), and was struck by the luxurious materials and outstanding execution. Castle made several pieces that referenced the Art Deco style, including Lady’s Writing Table with Chairs (III.xx [#494]) that received tremendous press for the record sales price it achieved. By the early 1980s, Castle’s work displayed affinities with the postmodern movement. Pieces are layered with historical and pop cultural references, and forms are simple, allowing for color to become an integral part by delineating the forms or separate elements. Overall, these pieces read as two-dimensional and cartoonlike with a static monumentality in comparison to his fluid, freeform earlier work.

139


Provenance  Alexander

F. Milliken Gallery, New York, NY; Private collection, Greensborough, NC

Exhibition History  Wendell

Castle New Work/Sculpture, Judy Youens Perception Galleries, Houston, TX, March 11–April 25, 1987

Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is 839.

III.xx  [#840]

Encouraged Materials  Japanese

ash and ebonized walnut

44 × 18 in. (73.7 × 111.8 × 45.7 cm)

Dimensions  29 × Date  1986 Signed  (Wendell

Castle 1986) left side, top

Provenance  Alexander F. Milliken

Gallery, New York, NY; Lewis Collection, Richmond,VA

Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio II.839

inventory number is 840.

III.xx  [841]

Secret Plan II.841

Materials  Green-stained

curly maple veneer and solid

painted cherry Dimensions  62 ×

21 × 16 in. (157.5 × 53.3 × 40.6 cm)

Date  1986 Signed  Unknown Provenance  Unknown Exhibition History  Wendell

Castle: Recent Sculpture, Harcus Gallery, Boston, MA, January 7–February 7, 1987 Castle/Paley, Bevier Gallery, Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, NY, March 16–April 5, 1987

II.840

Dylan Landis, “A Delicate Balance: Artist Wendell Castle Redefines Furniture and Does it with Humor,” Chicago Tribune, March 27, 1988.

Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

Pamela Lewis, “Tabling Questions of Art vs. Craft, Two Artists Make Statements in Utility,” The Houston Post (Houston, TX), March  7, 1987.

III.xx  [845]

Ladder of Providence Materials  Bubinga

Madeleine McDermott Hamm, “Art Furniture: Alive and Well in Houston,” Houston Chronicle (Houston, TX), March 12, 1987.

Dimensions  60 ×

Provenance  Snyderman

Gallery, Philadelphia, PA; Private collection, Philadelphia, PA

III,xx  [#839]

Materials  Painted

lacewood, ebony veneer, and brass

hinges Dimensions  29 ×

32 × 16 in. (73.7 × 81.3 × 40.6 cm)

Date  1986 Signed  (Wendell

146

Castle 1986)

32 × 17 in. (152.4 × 81.3 × 43.2 cm)

Signed  Unknown

inventory number is 828.

This Way Cabinet

veneer and ebonized cherry

Date  1986

Hugh Scriven, “Hugh Scriven Looks at the Work of Wendell Castle and his Students,” Woodworking International (Summer 1987). Comments  Studio

inventory number is 841.

II.845

Exhibition History  Time and Defiance of Gravity, Memorial Art Gallery, Rochester, NY, July 12–September 21, 1986; Mead Art Museum, Amherst College, Amherst, MA, October 1–December 2, 1986 Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is 845.


III.xx  [846]

Dr. Vermin’s Attitude Materials  Stained

curly maple veneer, painted poplar, and ebonized cherry 34 × 15 in. (144.8 × 86.4 × 38.1 cm)

Dimensions  57 × Date  1986 Signed  (Wendell

Castle 1986) right side, top

Provenance  Alexander F. Milliken

Gallery, New York, NY; Lewis collection, Richmond,VA

Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  “Artists Receive State Fellowships,” News and Events, Rochester Institute of Technology newsletter (Rochester, NY), September 12, 1986.

Janet Ghent, “Castle’s Current Mood Is Sheer Magic,” The Tribune (Oakland, CA), February 7, 1987. Comments  Studio

inventory number is 846.

III.xx  [848]

Black Is the Color, Zero Is the Number Materials  Stained

curly maple veneer, ebony veneer,

and purpleheart Dimensions  67 ×

40 × 21 in. (170.2 × 101.6 × 53.3 cm) II.846

Date  1986 Signed  No Provenance  Private

collection, Greenwich, CT

Exhibition History  Time and Defiance of Gravity, Memorial Art Gallery, Rochester, NY, July 12–September 21, 1986; Mead Art Museum, Amherst College, Amherst, MA, October 1–December 2, 1986

Wendell Castle New Work/Sculpture, Judy Youens Perception Galleries, Houston, TX, March 11–April 25, 1987 The Art of Wendell Castle, Hokin/Kaufman Gallery, Chicago, IL, March 25–April 24, 1988 Literature  “Exhibitions,” Fine Arts at Amherst newsletter, Amherst College (Amherst, MA), Spring 1987.

Dylan Landis, “A Delicate Balance: Artist Wendell Castle Redefines Furniture and Does it with Humor,” Chicago Tribune, March 27, 1988. Comments  Studio

inventory number is 848.

III.xx  [849]

Olive Oyle’s Climbax Materials  Gaboon Dimensions  70 ×

ebony, aluminum, and cherry

42 × 32 in. (177.8 × 106.7 × 81.3 cm)

II.848

Furniture – in the Aluminum Vein, Kaiser Center Art Gallery, Oakland, CA, May 30–July 15, 1986 Artluminum, Maison Alcan, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, September 13–October 22, 1989 Kenan Center Show, Lockport, NY, November 1990 Literature  Patricia Beach Smith, “Furniture Exhibit Lets Aluminum Prove its Mettle,” Sacramento Bee (Sacramento, CA), June 26, 1986.

Fort Wayne Museum of Art, Artful Objects: Recent American Crafts (Fort Wayne, IN: Fort Wayne Museum of Art, 1989). Janet Ghent, “Aluminum as Furniture: Not Exactly your Basic Pots and Pans,” The Tribune (Oakland, CA), June 17, 1986. Janet Ghent, “Castle’s Current Mood Is Sheer Magic,” The Tribune (Oakland, CA), February 7, 1987. Al Morch, “Heavy Aluminum,” San Francisco Examiner, June 14, 1986. Natalie Van Straaten, “‘Off the Wall’ Art Is Functional too,’” Skyline (Topeka, KS), March 10, 1988. Comments  Studio

inventory number is 849.

Date  1986 Signed  Unknown Provenance  Private

collection, New York, NY

II.849

Exhibition History  The Art

of Wendell Castle, Hokin/ Kaufman Gallery, Chicago, IL, March 25–April 24, 1988 Artful Objects: Recent American Crafts, Fort Wayne Museum of Art, Fort Wayne, IN, May 13–July 16, 1989

147


Dimensions  36 ×

58 × 24 in. (91.4 × 147.3 × 61 cm)

III.xx  [537]

79) inscription on inner side of

Materials  Walnut

Zephyr Chairs

Date  1979 Signed  (W. Castle

support

Dimensions  28½ ×

Provenance  Museum

Date  1979

of Fine Arts, Boston, MA. Purchased from the artist, museum purchase with funds donated by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Deborah M. Noonan Foundation. Acc. no. 1979.266.

Signed  Varies Provenance  Private

by Master Craftsmen, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, 1978

David Gilhooly, Newport, OR Wendell Castle and Nancy Jurs, Scottsville, NY

Sitting in Style:Wendell Castle,Tage Frid, Judy Kensley McKie; Contemporary Furniture in Cooperation with the Museum of Fine Arts, Society of Arts and Crafts, Boston, MA, May 18–June 30, 1980

The Maker’s Hand: American Studio Furniture, 1940–1990, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, November 12, 2003–February 8, 2004 Literature  Sally

Eauclaire, “Wendell Castle: Wood, Form and Space,” Craft Horizons (December 1978). Jonathan Fairbanks and Elizabeth Bidwell Bates, American Furniture 1620 to the Present (New York: Richard Marek Publishers, 1981). Edward S. Cooke, Jr., Davira S. Taragin, and Joseph Giovannini, Furniture by Wendell Castle (New York: Hudson Hills Press, 1989). MFA Preview, “Man Acquires Handcrafted Furniture,” (February/March 1980). Ron Netsky, “Carving out a Career: Retrospective Surveys Art of Wendell Castle,” Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, NY), December 23, 1990. Comments  This

settee is a version of the one originally made for Gannett Newspaper Corporation, now in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, II.xx [#250]. Studio inventory number is unassigned.

Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  Four chairs were made. The sleigh-like supports are a variation on the Zephyr model. One chair was remade with a hoop base in 1987. Studio inventory number is 537.

III.xx  [512]

Zephyr Rocker II.512

Literature  Jonathan

Fairbanks and Elizabeth Bidwell Bates, American Furniture 1620 to the Present (New York: Richard Marek Publishers, 1981). Comments  Studio

inventory number is unassigned.

Sling Chair Materials  Oak

Provenance  Wendell

collection, Scarsdale, NY; Private collection, Glen Ridge, NJ

Comments  Studio

Castle and Nancy Jurs, Scottsville,

Materials  Cherry Dimensions  28½ × Date  1980

Literature  Unknown

Signed  (W. Castle

Comments  Studio

inventory number is unassigned.

III.xx  [B201]

Desk Chair 21¾ × 18 in. (74.9 × 55.2 × 45.7 cm)

Signed  No Provenance  Private

collection, Ohio

Exhibition History  Unknown

of Fine Arts, Boston, MA.

Acc. no. 1979.270. Exhibition History  The

Maker’s Hand: American Studio Furniture, 1940–1990, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, November 12, 2003–February 8, 2004

Literature  Unknown Comments  This chair was commissioned to accompany Desk, III.xx [#84] and Chair, III.xx [B200]. Studio inventory number is unassigned. II.A147

176

inventory number is 512.

NY

Date  1979

Provenance  Museum

81)

Provenance  Private

Exhibition History  Unknown

Dimensions  29½ ×

79)

Signed  (W. Castle

Three-Legged Chair

Materials  Walnut

Signed  (W. Castle

26 × 40 in. (71.1 × 66 × 101.6 cm)

Date  1981

III.xx  [A147]

79)

Materials  Elm

Date  1979

Dimensions  28 ×

29 × 36 in. (90.2 × 73.7 × 91.4 cm)

Date  1979

Double Chair-Back Settee 47 × 17½ in. (73 × 119.4 × 44.5 cm)

maple

Literature  Unknown

and leather

Dimensions  35½ ×

Signed  (WC

Materials  Curly

Exhibition History  Unknown

III.xx  [A146]

III.xx  [A21]

Dimensions  28¾ ×

collection, Cambridge, MA

Beverly Hafner, Rochester, NY; Unknown

Exhibition History  Contemporary Works

Furniture by Wendell Castle, Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit, MI, December 5, 1989–February 4, 1990; Delaware Art Museum, Wilmington, DE, March 9– May 13, 1990;Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, VA, June 19–August 19, 1990; Memorial Art Gallery, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, November 17, 1990–January 20, 1991; American Craft Museum, New York, NY, February 14–April 30, 1991

26 × 23 in. (72.4 × 66 × 58.4 cm)

24½ × 21 in. (72.4 × 62.2 × 53.3 cm)

80)


Signed  (W. Castle

80)

Provenance  Fendrick

Gallery, Washington, DC; Private collection, Washington, DC

Exhibition History  Furniture

as Art II, Fendrick Gallery, Washington, DC, November 5–29, 1980 Evolution of the Workspace, Steelcase Inc., New York, NY, July 11–November 4, 1983 Furniture by Wendell Castle, Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit, MI, December 5, 1989–February 4, 1990; Delaware Art Museum, Wilmington, DE, March 9– May 13, 1990;Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, VA, June 19–August 19, 1990; Memorial Art Gallery, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, November 17, 1990–January 20, 1991; American Craft Museum, New York, NY, February 14–April 30, 1991

Literature  Sarah Booth Conroy, “The Art You Would Love to Use,” The Washington Post (Washington, DC), November 16, 1980.

Edward S. Cooke, Jr., Davira S. Taragin, and Joseph Giovannini, Furniture by Wendell Castle (New York: Hudson Hills Press, 1989). David H. Hanks, The Evolution of the Workspace (New York: Steelcase, Inc., 1983).

II.429.1

Provenance  Fendrick

Gallery, Washington, DC; Private

collection, New York Exhibition History  Unknown

Conway, Art for Everyday (New York: Clarkson Potter Publishers, 1990). Literature  Patricia

Comments  This chair is a new variation of the three-legged Alpha. Another version was made to accompany Three-Legged Thumb Desk, III.xx [#429]. Studio inventory number is unassigned.

M.F. Kennedy, “Earthly Angels,” Town & Country (February 1992). Jo Ann Lewis, “Unusual Gifts from Bugs to Blocks,” The Washington Post (Washington, DC), December 13, 1980. Todd Merrill and Julie V. Iovine, Modern Americana: Studio Furniture from High Craft to High Glam (New York: Rizzoli, 2008).

553

Ron Netsky, “Carving out a Career,” Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, NY), December 23, 1990. Comments  Victory Chair was made en suite with Victory Desk, III.xx [#428]. Studio inventory number is 428.

III.xx  [553]

Apollo Arm Chair Materials  Cherry

and suede

Dimensions  29¾ × III.xx  [429.1]

Date  1980

Three-Legged Chair

Signed  Unknown

Materials  Maple Dimensions  28 ×

Provenance  Unknown

25 × 25 in. (71.1 × 63.5 × 63.5 cm)

Exhibition History  Unknown

Date  1980 Signed  (W. Castle

Literature  “Wendell Castle: Imagination by Design,” Gunlocke Forum, vol. 2, no. 3.

1980)

Provenance  Kagan

23 × 24 in. (75.6 × 58.4 × 61 cm)

Gallery, Philadelphia, PA

Comments  Studio

inventory number is 553.

Private collection, Santa Fe, NM Private collection, Florida

III.xx  [A213A]

Dining Chairs

Exhibition History  Unknown

Materials  Cherry

Literature  Unknown

Dimensions  31 ×

Comments  This chair was made en suite with ThreeLegged Thumb Desk, III.xx [#429]. Studio inventory number is 429.

and leather

23½ × 18 in. (78.7 × 59.7 × 45.7 cm)

Date  1980 Signed  (W. Castle

80)

Provenance  Private III.xx  [428]

Victory Chair

Literature  Unknown

Materials  Walnut Dimensions  29 × Date  1980

collection, Brookline, MA

Exhibition History  Unknown

32 × 24 in. (73.7 × 81.3 × 61 cm) II.428

177


Literature  Sebby Wilson Jacobson, “More Dream Castles,” Times-Union (Rochester, NY), January 22, 1987.

Madeleine McDermott Hamm, “Art Furniture: Alive and Well in Houston,” Houston Chronicle (Houston, TX), March 12, 1987. “On the cover. . .: Wendell Castle at Perception,” Art Now/Southwest Gallery Guide (March 1987). Comments  Studio

inventory number is 833.

III.xx  [835]

Ready Materials  Stained

curly maple veneer

40 × 17 in. (101.6 × 101.6 × 43.2 cm)

Dimensions  40 × Date  1986 Signed  (Wendell

Castle 1986)

Provenance  Alexander F. Milliken

Gallery, New York,

NY; Marie Stuart, Pennsylvania Exhibition History  Wendell

Castle New Work/Sculpture, Judy Youens Perception Galleries, Houston, TX, March 11–April 25, 1987

Literature  Theresa Forsman, “Furniture for Art’s Sake,” The Record (Hackensack, NJ), July 6, 1986.

II.833

II.835

Madeleine McDermott Hamm, “Art Furniture: Alive and Well in Houston,” Houston Chronicle (Houston, TX), March 12, 1987.

Time and Defiance of Gravity, Memorial Art Gallery, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, July 12– September 21, 1986; Mead Art Museum, Amherst College, Amherst, MA, October 1–December 2, 1986

Sebby Wilson Jacobson, “Keys to the Castle,” TimesUnion (Rochester, NY), December 27, 1990.

“New and Notable,” Industrial Design (September/ October 1986).

Dylan Landis, “Furniture Is the Canvas for Wendell Castle’s Wild Ideas,” Chicago Tribune, December 31, 1989.

Furniture by Wendell Castle, Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit, MI, December 5, 1989–February 4, 1990; Delaware Art Museum, Wilmington, DE, March 9– May 13, 1990;Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, VA, June 19–August 19, 1990; Memorial Art Gallery, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, November 17, 1990–January 20, 1991; American Craft Museum, New York, NY, February 14–April 30, 1991

Hugh Scriven, “Hugh Scriven Looks at the Work of Wendell Castle and his Students,” Woodworking International (Summer 1987).

Hugh Scriven, “Hugh Scriven Looks at the Work of Wendell Castle and his Students,” Woodworking International (Summer 1987).

Literature  Edward

S. Cooke, Jr., Davira S. Taragin, and Joseph Giovannini, Furniture by Wendell Castle (New York: Hudson Hills Press, 1989).

III.xx  [836]

Sally Vallongo, “Wendell Castle Takes an Artistic View of Furniture,” The Blade (Toledo, OH), December 17, 1989.

Materials  Ebonized

Comments  Studio

Dimensions  44 ×

veneer

Lisa Hammel, Time and Defiance of Gravity: Recent Works by Wendell Castle (Rochester, NY: Memorial Art Gallery, 1986).

214

Lucky cherry, stained and painted curly maple veneer, and lacquered maple 23⅝ × 15½ in. (111.8 × 60 × 39.4 cm)

Date  1986

___, “Making Furniture into Sculpture,” Sunday News Journal (Wilmington, DE), March 11, 1990.

“Exhibitions,” Fine Arts at Amherst [College], newsletter of the Associates of Fine Arts, Spring 1987.

inventory number is 832.

Signed  (Wendell

III.xx  [833]

Vespertine

Susan Dodge Peters, “The Big Time,” City Newspaper (Rochester, NY), July 24, 1986.

inventory number is 835.

Edward J. Sozanski, “The Table as Artistic Statement,” Philadelphia Inquirer, March 25, 1990.

Penelope Bass Cope, “Matter . . . of fact: Showcase,” Matter (July 1990).

Arthur C. Danto, Peter T. Joseph, and Emma T. Cobb, Angel Chairs: New Work by Wendell Castle (New York: Peter Joseph Gallery, 1991).

Comments  Studio

Materials  Solid

Castle 1986)

Provenance  Alexander F. Milliken

curly maple and stained curly maple

Dimensions  34½ ×

38 × 26 in. (87.6 × 96.5 × 66 cm)

Date  1986 Signed  Unknown Provenance  Alexander F. Milliken

Gallery, New York,

NY; Unknown Exhibition History  Second Annual Wendell

Castle School Faculty Show, Dawson Gallery, Rochester, NY, January 9– February 10, 1987 Wendell Castle New Work/Sculpture, Judy Youens Perception Galleries, Houston, TX, March 11–April 25, 1987

Gallery, New York, NY; The Art Institute of Chicago. Raymond W. Garbe Fund in honor of Carl A. Erickson, Sr. Acc. no. 1987.122.

Literature  Milo M. Naeve, Identifying American Furniture: A Pictorial Guide to Styles and Terms, Colonial to Contemporary (New York: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc., 1989). Comments  Studio

inventory number is 836.

III.xx  [837]

Sooner or Later Materials  Painted

curly maple and painted poplar

Dimensions  without

base: 63 × 17 × 17 in. (160 × 43.2 × 43.2 cm); base: 1½ × 56 × 39 in. (3.8 × 142.2 × 99.1 cm)


Date  1986 Signed  Unknown Provenance  Alexander F. Milliken

Gallery, New York,

NY; Unknown Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is 837.

III.xx  [842]

Trompe L’oeil Dining Table Materials  Bleached

maple, purpleheart legs, and ebony

feet Dimensions  29½ ×

70 × 45 in. (74.9 × 177.8 ×

114.3 cm) Date  1986 Signed  (Wendell

Castle)

Provenance  Marie

Rolf and Robin Lehman, New York

Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  The dining table is fitted with four drawers, two on each side. Studio inventory number is 842.

III.xx  [851] II.836

Ladder of Trust Materials  Ebonized

II.851

and painted solid cherry and

stained maple veneer 42½ × 23 in. (160 × 108 × 58.4 cm)

Dimensions  63 × Date  1986

Signed  Unknown Provenance  Unknown Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is 851.

III.xx  [852]

Ladder of Justice Materials  Stained

curly maple veneer and stained and painted solid maple

Dimensions  52 ×

40 × 16½ in. (132.1 × 101.6 × 41.9 cm)

Date  1986 Signed  Unknown Provenance  Alexander F. Milliken

Gallery, New York, NY; Private collection, New York, NY

Exhibition History  The Art

of Wendell Castle, Hokin/ Kaufman Gallery, Chicago, IL, March 25–April 24, 1988

Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio II.837

inventory number is 852. 852

215


Provenance  Wendell

Castle and Nancy Jurs, Scottsville,

NY Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is unassigned.

III.xx  [A167]

Dictionary Stand Materials  Walnut

23 × depth? in. (106.7 × 58.4 ×

Dimensions  42 ×

depth? cm) Date  1980 Signed  (W

Castle 80)

Provenance  Private

collection, Buffalo, NY

Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is unassigned.

III.xx  [A176]

Dictionary Stand Materials  Walnut Dimensions  top: 41 ×

24 × 20 in. (104.1 × 61 × 50.8 cm); bottom: 41 × 25½ × 20 in. (41 × 64.8 × 50.8 cm)

Date  1980 Signed  (W. Castle

80) under top

Provenance  The

Store for Art in Crafts,Verona, PA; Roslyn Litman, Pittsburgh, PA

Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is unassigned.

III.xx  [B34]

Dictionary Stand Materials  Oak Dimensions  40½ ×

24 × 16¾ in. (102.9 × 61 × 42.5 cm)

Date  1980 Signed  Inscribed

dedication and date

Provenance  Private

collection, Greenwich, CT

Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is unassigned.

[2504 III.xx  [2504]

Speaking Words of Wisdom Materials  Stained Dimensions  46½ ×

III.xx  [586]

Dictionary Stand

Date  1989

Materials  Imbuya

Signed  See

Dimensions  39 ×

14 × 24 in. (99.1 × 35.6 × 61 cm) 82)

Provenance  Private

collection,Virginia

Exhibition History  Unknown Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

226

29 × 24 in. (118.1 × 73.7 × 61 cm)

Comments

Provenance  Peter T. Joseph, New York, NY; Unknown Exhibition History  Unknown

Date  1982 Signed  (W. Castle

mahogany and white gold leaf

inventory number is unassigned.

Bethany, “The Art of Craft,” New York magazine (February 18, 1991). Literature  Marilyn

Kate Carmel ed., American Craft Museum honors Barbara and Donald Tober: Celebrate the Artistic Life (New York: American Craft Museum, 1993). Arthur C. Danto, Peter T. Joseph, and Emma T. Cobb, Angel Chairs: New Work by Wendell Castle (New York: Peter Joseph Gallery, 1991). Emanuela Frattini Magnusson, “Mecenate a N.Y.,” Casa Vogue (February 1994). Katharine Whittemore, “The Crafting of Art,” Investment Vision (February/March 1991).


Comments  The following, by Eugene O’Neill, is incised onto the base: “The tragedy of life is what makes it worthwhile. I think that any life which merits living lies in the effort to realize some dream, and the higher that dream is, the harder it is to realize. Most decidedly, we must all have our dreams. If one hasn’t them, one might as well be dead—one is dead. The only success is in failure. Any man who has a big enough dream must be a failure and must accept that as one of the conditions of being alive. If he ever thinks for a moment that he is a success, then he is finished. He stops.” Studio inventory number is 2504.

III.xx  [2544]

Cone Reading Stand Materials  Ebonized

cherry, curly walnut veneer, poplar, leather, bowling ball, and cue balls

Dimensions  height? ×

31½ × 24 in. (height? × 80 ×

61 cm) Date  1989 Signed  Unknown Provenance  Janis Wetsman

Collection, Farmington, MI; Private collection, Birmingham, MI

Exhibition History  Of Wonder

and Delight, Janis Wetsman Collection, Farmington, MI, November 16– December 22, 1989

2544

859

Literature  Unknown Comments  Studio

inventory number is 2544.

III.xx  [859]

Trompe L’oeil Umbrella Stand III.xx  [2543]

Caligari Reading Stand Materials  Baltic

birch, ebony, ebony veneer, mahogany, brass, gesso, aniline dye, and acrylic paint

Dimensions  34 ×

22½ × 31 in. (86.4 × 57.2 × 78.7 cm)

Date  1989 Signed  (Wendell

Castle 1989)

Provenance  Peter T. Joseph, New York, NY; Unknown Exhibition History  Sculpture

90, Fendrick Gallery, Washington, DC, June–July 1990

Literature  Unknown Comments  This reading stand is part of the Dr. Caligari series, started in 1984. Other pieces in the series include a cabinet, III.xx [#2545]; a clock, III.xx [#688]; a mantle clock, III.xx [#1075]; chairs, III.xx [#822] and III.xx [#2541]; and desks, III.xx [#822] and III.xx [#2516]. Analogous to the 1980s series, Castle designed furniture commissioned by Peter T. Joseph that consisted of library paneling, IV.xx [#2627]; a piano, IV.xx [#2550] and piano stool, IV.xx [#2550]; a desk, IV.xx [#2559] and desk chair, [#2559]; a sofa, IV.xx [#2661]; a chair, IV.xx [#2661]; and a rug, IV.xx [#2673]. Studio inventory number is 2543.

Materials  Maple Dimensions  36 ×

15 × 17 in. (91.4 × 38.1 × 43.2 cm)

Date  1977 Signed  (W.C. 77)

on exterior near base

Provenance  Peter T. Joseph, New York, NY; Wendy

Evans Joseph, New York, NY Exhibition History  Sixteen American Woodcarvers, Craft

Center, Worcester, MA, February 11–March 24, 1978; Warner Communications, New York, NY, April 3–28, 1978

Furniture by Wendell Castle, Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit, MI, December 5, 1989–February 4, 1990; Delaware Art Museum, Wilmington, DE, March 9– May 13, 1990;Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, VA, June 19–August 19, 1990; Memorial Art Gallery, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, November 17, 1990–January 20, 1991; American Craft Museum, New York, NY, February 14–April 30, 1991 Literature  American Craft Museum: Celebration 25 (New York: American Craft Council: 1981).

American Woodcarvers catalogue, Craft Center, Worcester, MA, 1979.

Illusions, Carl Solway Gallery, New York, NY, May 9– June 3, 1978 Wood:Traditions/Innovations, Furniture and Objects by Fourteen American Woodworkers, Richard Kagan Studio and Gallery, Philadelphia, PA, November 3–December 17, 1978 Official residence of the vice president (Walter Mondale) of the U.S., Washington, DC, 1979–1980 New Handmade Furniture: American Furniture Masters Working in Hardwood, American Craft Museum, New York, NY, May 13–July 15, 1979; Norton Gallery of Art, West Palm Beach, FL, May 28–July 6, 1980

227


Wendell castle catalogue raisonne issuu