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James Castle Shed

James Castle Shed, circa 1935, Tom Trusky Papers, Special Collections and Archives, Boise State University.

James Castle Artwork

James Castle (1899 – 1977), Untitled (House) n.d., © 2021 James Castle Collection and Archive, All Rights Reserved

This shed was built around 1910, well before the Castle family moved to this property. At some time in the early 1930s James Castle moved into the shed and made it serve his needs.

From that point until 1963 when he moved into the Cozy Cottage trailer this would have been the center of his artmaking. Drawings from this period sometimes show the interiors of similar outbuildings, including what might be called ‘exhibitions’ – dozens of works propped up or hanging on the walls creating an informal gallery. A number of surviving works have nail holes from this practice, and it’s reasonable to assume that some may have hung in this shed for Castle’s personal enjoyment.   

Today the shed is undergoing conservation efforts to preserve a structure never intended to survive more than a century of use. This work continues to inform our understanding of how Castle lived and created art.