Untitled: The Art of James Castle

In 2013 the Smithsonian American Art Museum acquired 54 pieces by James Castle (1899-1977). With this acquisition, the museum now holds one of the largest public collections of Castle’s work. The new exhibition Untitled: The Art of James Castle features this representative selection of the artist’s immense oeuvre, including drawings, handmade books, texts, and constructions.

Castle spent his formative years in remote Garden Valley, Idaho and his adult life at locations near Boise, where, for nearly seven decades, he devoted himself daily to intensive art-making. Castle worked with materials that were immediately available, including a wide range of ephemera—advertisements, periodicals, and packaging—that he manipulated with soot, sticks, string and improvised colors to create an elaborate and unmistakable representation of his world.

Since Castle’s work first came to light in the 1950s, attention has focused primarily on the unusual circumstances of his life: Castle was born profoundly deaf, remained illiterate, and never acquired a conventional mode of communicating with others. He is often assumed to have lived a form of extreme isolation. This exhibition seeks to move beyond such biography, to appreciate the remarkable quality of Castle’s vision, and to question how the works themselves can elucidate the world of one of the most enigmatic American artists of the twentieth century.


one of new jersey’s most famous confections, saltwater taffy, was invented because some asshole’s candy shop flooded and ruined all his taffy and he sold it to a child anyway and i think that pretty much says a lot about the overall cultural climate of new jersey

A woman who hates you is playing the pianoforte.

You have five hundred a year. From who? Five hundred what? No one knows. No one cares. You have it. It’s yours. Every year. All five hundred of it.

A charming man attempts to flirt with you. This is terrible.

You are in a garden, and you are astonished.

Kaleidoscope Eyes
Artist: Panic! at the Disco
Album: Vices and Virtues (Shockhound bonus track)
Playcount: 51,311 plays

I’m a disappearing act done poorly.
But if I ever get it right, you’ll miss me sorely.”


New Year’s Eve 1969 in Grand Central Station

John William Waterhouse - The Soul of the Rose

Your ‘nonsense’ about Voltaire contains more good sense than all the strictures I have seen upon his works put together. Next to your own ideas, those you gave me from Mr. J. were most acceptable. I wish you would continue to give me any fugitive ideas or remarks which may occur to you in the course of your reading; and what you call your rattling way, is that of all things which pleases me the most. In short, let the way be your own, and it cannot fail to be acceptable, to please, and to amuse.

Aaron Burr to his wife Theodosia, December, 1791.

I just

(via aaronburrssexdungeon)