“My vocabulary has always been organic; sometimes I think of it as actually growing from a seed or idea. My ideas actually grow into something,” said Wendell Castle of his work.
Now you can learn more in a new solo exhibition of the late American designer's work at TEFAF New York this May, presented by Friedman Benda.
Throughout a celebrated career spanning six decades, Castle introduced new ways of looking at, thinking about, and making furniture. In doing so, he created a new sculptural vocabulary that defied categorisation. Wendell Castle: A New Vocabulary will bring both early and formative pieces rarely shown outside of public collections and museum exhibitions in dialogue with ambitious late works.
This stand-alone presentation, in one of the Park Avenue Armory’s historic rooms, examines a sculptural approach to design that defined Castle’s practice from the late 1950s onwards. With his pioneering use of the technique of stack lamination, he was able to develop innovative forms and volumes, laying the foundation of his approach and subsequently that of the furniture as an art movement.
At every stage, Castle endeavoured to incorporate innovations in materials and design. Later on in his career, Castle exploited the possibilities of advanced technologies, such as 3D scanning, modelling and milling, to create increasingly dynamic and expressive bodies of work.
Curated by Glenn Adamson, Yale senior scholar, contributor to the Wendell Castle Catalogue Raisonne, and former Director of the Museum of Arts and Design, this exhibition will be accompanied by a publication with an introductory essay by Adamson.
Born in Kansas in 1932, Wendell Castle received a BFA from the University of Kansas in Industrial Design in 1958 and an MFA in sculpture, graduating in 1961. He moved to Rochester, New York to teach at the School of American Craftsmen and established a permanent studio in the area. A major retrospective of his work, Wendell Castle Remastered, debuted at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York in 2016 and travelled to the Memorial Art Gallery at the University of Rochester in 2018.
Wendell Castle's work can be found in the permanent collections of more than 50 museums and cultural institutions worldwide.