Kohler Foundation

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The Kohler Foundation was established in Kohler, Wisconsin in 1940. The foundation supports the arts in several ways, preservation, scholarships, grants, the performing arts and the foundation also manages the Waelderhaus, a historic home in Kohler. One of the foundation's first projects was restoration of the Waelderhaus and made it available to the community.

The Kohler Foundation was instrumental in the restoration of the Old Wade House in Greenbush, a 19th Century stagecoach stop halfway between Sheboygan and Fond du Lac. Today, Wade House is a Wisconsin Historic Site and it is on the National Register of Historic Places.

In the last 40 years, the foundation has worked to preserve folk art, the work of self-taught artisans, and works of little known artists. Initial efforts were concentrated in Wisconsin, such as the Wisconsin Concrete Park, Prairie Moon, and more recently, the Mary Nohl L. Art Environment, one of the most endangered sites in Wisconsin. The foundation has expanded the outreach to self-taught artisan environments in Louisiana, Kansas, Ohio, Maine, Georgia and North Carolina.

For more about the Kohler Foundation and its efforts, visit the website of the Kohler Foundation, Inc. Several sites aided by the Kohler Foundation, and documented here, are listed below.

J.R. Manning 2019


Chauvin Sculpture Garden & Art (Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana)
Work of self-taught artisan, Kenny Hill, gifted to Nicholls State University Art Studio
Ernest Hüpeden's Painted Forest (Sauk County, Wisconsin)
Simple white frame building with walls and ceiling covered with murals
Garden of Eden (Russell County, Kansas)
Grandview (Iowa County, Wisconsin)
A sculpture garden created by Nick and Katherine Englebert from 1937 through the 1950s.
Hartman Rock Garden (Clark County, Ohio)
The work of self-taught artisan, Harry George “Ben” Hartman
Itasca Rock Garden (Freeborn County, Minnesota)
The creation of a self-taught artisan
James Tellen Woodland Sculpture Garden (Sheboygan County, Wisconsin)
Whimsical collection of concrete sculptures in an outdoor art environment
Klatt's Miniature Village (Waukesha County, Wisconsin)
Langlais Sculpture Preserve (Knox County, Maine)
90 acre homestead of self-taught artisan, Bernard “Blackie” Langlais, and his wife Helen
M.T. Liggett's Political Sculptures (Kiowa County, Kansas)
Fanciful artwork of the late M.T. Liggett
Mary L. Nohl Art Environment (Milwaukee County, Wisconsin)
Pasaquan (Marion County, Georgia)
Seven acre site consisting of the work of a self-taught artisan
Paul & Matilda Wegner Grotto (Monroe County, Wisconsin)
An extraordinary sculpture environment by Paul and Matilda Wegner on their farm
Prairie Moon Sculpture Garden & Museum (Buffalo County, Wisconsin)
Lifetime collection of a self-taught artisan; Restored by the Kohler Foundation in 1994
Sylvanus Wade House (Sheboygan County, Wisconsin)
Whirligig Park (Wilson County, North Carolina)
Collection of whirligigs built by Vollis Simpson
Wisconsin Concrete Park (Price County, Wisconsin)
Sculpture garden of self-taught artisan, Fred Smith