Born in Kansas in 1932, Wendell Castle has been the subject of and participated in numerous exhibitions at museums and galleries throughout the world. His work can be found in the permanent collections of over 40 museums and cultural institutions, including: the Metropolitan Museum of Art; Museum of Modern Art (New York); Art Institute of Chicago; Smithsonian American Art Museum; Musée des Arts Decoratifs de Montreal; Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum (New York); The Museum of Art and Design (New York); Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Nordenfieldske Kunstindustrimiseet (Oslo, Norway); Philadelphia Museum of Art; and The White House (Washington, DC), to name only a few.
His private patrons are as various as Philippe de Montebello, Martin Margulies, and Thomas Armstrong, while his work can be found in the corporate collections of American Express, Bausch & Lomb, DuPont, Forbes Company, Johnson Wax, Steinway Company, and the Wolfsonian Foundation, among others.
He has been the recipient of many honours and awards, including four National Endowment for the Arts grants, three honorary degrees, a Visionaries of the American Craft Movement award from the American Craft Museum (1994), the American Craft Council Gold Medal (1997), Master of the Medium award from The James Renwick Alliance of National Museum of American Art, D.C (1999), and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Brooklyn Museum of Art (2007).
Wendell Castle received a B.F.A. from the University of Kansas in Industrial Design in 1958 and an M.F.A. 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, which is still operating today.