At fifteen, Wieland Kuijken began studying the piano and later cello at the Conservatory of Bruges, in 1957 he moved to the Royal Conservatory of Brussels, where he completed his studies in 1962. However, he began already to care for the viola da gamba. Since 1958 he was a member of the Ensemble Musiques Nouvelles, which devoted himself primarily to avant-garde music and its offshoot the Alarius ensemble Brussels, where he remained connected until 1972.
The Alarius ensemble focused from 1968 increasingly on the historical performance practice. Here he worked with his brother, Sigiswald Kuijken, whose wife Marleen Thiers and Robert Kohnen, Barthold Kuijken later. From 1972, the ensemble La Petite Bande and the Kuijken String Quartet emerged later. With Gustav Leonhardt, Frans Brüggen and Alfred Deller, he played a number of works of chamber music. Today he is one in his generation of the most popular performers of early music on the baroque cello and viola da gamba.
As a teacher he was since the 1970s at the Royal Conservatories of Antwerp, Brussels and The Hague, active in Innsbruck since 1973. In 2004, he finished his teaching activities. He has influenced and inspired, including Jordi Savall an immense number of musicians in the meantime lost art of the viola da gamba.
He regularly invited as a jury member in international competitions in Bruges, Paris, Boston and Utrecht. He is a frequent lecturer at master classes in various European countries.