Carl Peterson Sculpture Garden Carl Peterson (1969)
About the Artist/Site
Carl Peterson transformed his yard in St. James, Minnesota, into an enchanted kingdom of animals, castles, churches, and towers. He began his work in the early 1920s and created for more than 40 years. A son, Filbert, lived in the home until 1985, at which point a Minnesota art and antiques dealer purchased the work and dismantled the site. Kohler Foundation was first made aware of Peterson's work when a small group of sculptures went up for auction in Maine. Kohler Foundation acquired 10 pieces at auction, brought them to Wisconsin, and had them fully conserved. This began the search for more information and ultimately the goal to reassemble as much of the original environment as possible.
Additional pieces were acquired from the dealer who dismantled the original site, and after major conservation, were installed at the John Michael Kohler Arts Center. The Peterson family has visited a number of times and even hosted a family wedding among the restored sculptures.
Text: “Carl Peterson” Kohler Foundation: A History, edited by Terri Yoho, Kohler Foundation, Inc., 2018, pp. 306-311.
Map & Site Information
608 New York Avenue
Sheboygan, WI, 53081 us
Latitude/Longitude: 43.7525321 / -87.7104213
Relocated (incl. Museums)
St. James, Minnesota
608 New York Avenue , Sheboygan, WI, 53081, United States
1920s to 1960s
Though the site no longer exists, the John Michael Kohler Arts Center has more than 50 pieces from Peterson's art environment in its permanent collection. Fifteen of those objects are large-scale sculptures installed in the garden.