John Michael Kohler Arts Center’s new museum to open this fall

Will house 25,000 works of art

A Tres Birds rendering of the Art Preserve in Sheboygan.

The John Michael Kohler Arts Center’s new $40 million museum and art preserve in Sheboygan is scheduled to open in late August.

The new three-story, 56,000-square-foot Art Preserve was constructed on 38 acres of land on the west side of Sheboygan, off I-43 and Indiana Avenue. It’s an additional location for the arts center, which will maintain its downtown Sheboygan location as the main venue for exhibitions, performances and other programs.

The Art Preserve, located at 3636 Lower Falls Road, is scheduled to open Aug. 29.

The project has been in the works for several years, since the John Michael Kohler Arts Center purchased 39 acres of the former Schudchardt Farm property from the city in 2016. Construction for the building began in May 2018.

The arts center said the new building will be “the world’s first facility entirely devoted to artist-built environments,” an art form created by artists who transform their homes, yards or other spaces into works of art. Admission will be free.

The Art Preserve will provide space for about 25,000 works of art and archival materials that previously could be seen only when on view at the arts center or on loan for exhibition at other institutions. The building was designed by Denver-based architecture firm Tres Birds.

The first level will feature a facsimile of Eugene Von Bruenchenhein’s pastel-colored Milwaukee home. The facility will also feature works by Levi Fisher Ames, Emery Blagdon, Loy Bowlin, Nek Chand, Annie Hooper, Jesse Howard, Mary Nohl, Dr. Charles Smith, Fred Smith, Lenore Tawney, Stella Waitzkin, Ray Yoshida and Albert Zahn.

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