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James Castle Art Festival in Garden Valley September 23

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About James Castle and the Garden Valley Celebrations:

The Magic of James Castle……..
Why we choose to celebrate James Castle. Son of Idaho and native of beautiful Garden Valley, James Castle was born September 25, 1899 to Francis J. Castle and Mary Nora Scanlon. The fifth of seven children, James was born two months premature. James was deaf and mute and did not attend school until he was 10 years old. He attended the Gooding School for the Deaf and Blind in southeastern Idaho from 1910-1915. Any practical form of communication learned at school was lost over time and it is not known if James ever learned sign language or spoke. Interestingly, his work exhibits a fascination with sign language and written language.
Entirely self-taught, James Castle created his artwork with found objects. Without any connection to life outside of Garden Valley and Boise, his artwork follows the path of the early 20th century “outsider art” movement yet he had little exposure and no comprehension to the work of other artists. James Castle’s art explores the rural landscape with a language and gracefulness all his own and from materials he collected and created. The magic of James Castle is although he was limited in his ability to communicate through language he was exceptional in his ability to communicate through his artwork. Garden Valley’s own James Castle stands as an example of perseverance, the innate creativity found within each of us and as an Idahoan to be very proud of indeed. Garden Valley Center for the Arts celebrates James Castle by keeping the spirit of creativity alive through the works of local and regional artists. Each September we honor his birth month with a modest arts festival and the ability to review life as it was in in the early 20th century in Garden Valley. The 2017 James Castle Arts Festival will take place on Saturday September 23 in Crouch, Garden Valley, Idaho.


James Castle Arts Festival poster

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