About Rip Caswell

Rip Caswell is widely recognized and celebrated as one of America’s preeminent bronze sculptors. He has dedicated his life to expressing his love of nature, wildlife, and the human form through his art. Caswell’s artworks can be found in public spaces and private collections throughout the U.S. and abroad. Caswell has earned numerous awards and honors which serve to highlight his distinguished body of work. This has earned him a national reputation as one of the country’s most respected bronze sculptors. Caswell has developed an ability to capture and convey emotion through his sculpture. It is this distinguishable talent that makes his creations come to life. 

Rip blogAs the son of a professional guide and outfitter, Rip Caswell developed an innate understanding and appreciation for nature and wildlife. As a young boy, he began sculpting his first figures from the moist shoreline clay of the Pend Oreille River near his home in the state of Washington. An early apprenticeship in taxidermy helped him establish an intimate familiarity with wildlife physiology and form. He quickly graduated from student to expert and gained regional and national attention for his uniquely natural style that seemed to capture the spirit of the animal. Caswell became reputed for bringing movement and grace into a field normally focused on technical accuracy rather than presentation.

After winning numerous awards, Caswell became sought after as a national authority in wildlife. He was also developing a growing interest in sculpting, and eventually began to pursue this talent more intentionally. He soon began sculpting professionally and producing works in bronze. Caswell has now turned his artistic ability over to bronze sculpting. His skill at capturing animals, and their natural habitat, in bronze, helps convey the importance of land and wildlife stewardship. As a sculptor he is able to fully express his own personal style and vision in presenting the beauty of nature’s form and movement.

Caswell employs the complex and ancient lost wax method of bronze sculpting. This 6000 year old, labor-intensive process yields remarkably detailed work from molten metal. Over the past 20 years, Caswell has sculpted over 200 pieces, in various styles, both wildlife and figurative. When they are finished in bronze, people can touch the sculptures and know what the artist felt as he was creating the piece. This is an important component in conveying the relationship between man and animal and alluding to the spirit of its subject.  Caswell’s art reflects his life experiences, many of which include the study, stewardship or enjoyment of wildlife and the great outdoors.

Caswell’s ability to capture life with uncanny realism is the result of his full immersion into the subjects, he is sculpting, whether the habits of wildlife, or the biography and community of people. Caswell’s passion for life is preserved in each piece, to be continually rediscovered as the sculptures silently reveal their captivating tales. In order to capture true realism Rip believes he needs to take his own journey to personally experience each subject he casts in bronze; not only capturing with meticulous detail the anatomy, but also releasing into the clay the heart and spirit of each subject he portrays.

Many of Rip Caswell’s most celebrated works have been commissions and monuments, many on display in public spaces, buildings and museums across the United States, including the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C. and the Pentagon. With dozens of prestigious awards and honors to his name, his work is highly sought after.  Rip’s work also continues to attract attention from personal collectors of contemporary fine art, and is popular with everyone from the casual gallery goer to devotees of traditionally crafted artworks.

Publicly Displayed Commissions: 

Strength of America: Historic Belmont Firehouse, Portland, OR; The Pentagon, Shanksville, PA; New York, NY
Exalted Ruler: Oregon Health Science University, Portland, OR; and Ketchum, ID
Temple Guardian: Park Plaza Towers, Vancouver, WA
Christ’s Family: Southlake Foursquare Church, West Linn, OR
Oregon Governor Tom McCall: River Front Park, Salem, OR
Tommy Tucker Iraq War Memorial: Madras, OR
Rainbow Splendor: Mayor’s Square City Park, Troutdale, OR; and Washington DC
Martha Jane Sands: Spirit Mountain Casino, McMinnvillle, OR; and Washington DC
Liberty: Washington DC
Inseparable Bond: Nashville, TN
Cougar, Beaver, Otter, Fish Monuments: Hells Gate State Park, Hells Gate, ID
Wetland Wonders: Park Plaza Towers, Vancouver, WA
She Who Watches: Park Plaza Towers, Vancouver, WA
Coyote Fountain: McMinnville Hotel, McMinnville, OR
The Battle: Antler’s Resort, Vail, CO
New Beginnings: High Desert Museum, Bend, OR
Noble Presence: High Desert Museum, Bend, OR; Loveland Sculpture Park, Loveland, CO
Swift Pursuit: Loveland Sculpture Park, Loveland, CO
Maestro James DePreist: Oregon Symphony,  Portland, OR

Since 2006 Caswell has experimented with painting. Looking for was another outlet for his emotion and passion, he found a fresh way to channel his artistic expression without limitation. He realized he could paint the spirit of words, with intention and emotion. For every ounce of minute detail he had crafted into his true-to-life-like sculpture, Rip was able to pour multiple amounts of liberated creativity onto his canvas. He had been released from the boundaries of the natural world he was used to working in.

Information about Rip Caswell and his work can be found in the archives of the following publications:

“Sculptor Donates Statue to Victims aboard Flight 93″,  A.P., Shanksville, PA May 24, 2003

“Treasures of Western Oregon” Hardbound, Morgan & Chase Publishing Inc. 2005

“Sculpting a Space of His Own” Gresham Outlook, March 11, 2006

“Divine Inspiration Fuels Sculptor” Mt Hood – Gorge Connection, April Issue, 2006


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