From 1947 to 1950, Kadishman studied with the Israeli sculptor Moshe Sternschuss at the Avni Institute of Art and Design in Tel Aviv, and in 1954 with the Israeli sculptor Rudi Lehmann in Jerusalem.
In 1959, he moved to London, where he attended Saint Martin’s School of Art and the Slade School of Art. During 1959 and 1960 he also studied with Anthony Caro and Reg Butler. He remained here until 1972; he had his first one-man show there in 1965 at the Grosvenor Gallery.
His sculptures of the 1960s were Minimalist in style, and so designed as to appear to defy gravity. This was achieved either through careful balance and construction, as in Suspense (1966), or by using glass and metal so that the metal appeared unsupported, as in Segments (1968). The glass allowed the environment to be part of the work.
In his youth, between 1950 and 1953, Kadishman worked as a shepherd on Kibbutz Ma’ayan Baruch. This experience with nature, sheep and shepherding had a significant impact on his later artistic work and career. The first major appearance of sheep in his work was in the 1978 Venice Biennale, where Kadishman presented a flock of colored live sheep as living art. In 1995, he began painting portraits of sheep by the hundreds, and even thousands, each one different from the next. These instantly-recognizable sheep portraits soon became his artistic “trademark”.
- 1947-50 Sculpture, with Moshe Sternschuss, Avni Institute of Art and Design
- 1954 Sculpture, with Rudi Lehman
- 1959-60 Art, Saint Martin’s School of Art, London
- 1961 Art, Slade School, London
- 1960 the America-Israel Cultural Foundation Scholarship.
- 1961, the Sainsbury Scholarship, London.
- 1967 first prize for sculpture, 5th Paris Biennale.
- 1978 Sandberg Prize recipient
- 1980 America-Israel Cultural Foundation Scholarship
- 1981 Eugene Kolb Prize for Israeli Graphic Arts, Tel Aviv Museum Prize of the Jury
- 1981 Norwegian International Print Biennale, Fredrikstad.
- 1984 Mendel Pundik Prize for Israeli Art, Tel Aviv Museum
- 1990 the Dizengoff Prize for Sculpture.
- 1995 the Israel Prize, for sculpture.
- 2002 the Honorary Fellowship Award from the Tel Aviv Museum of Art.