Fox Point, Wisconsin: Mary Nohl's Concrete Art

Folk artist Mary Nohl (1914-2001) filled her lakeside yard with many fanciful and distorted concrete figures. Threatened with demolition in 2014, the property was spared in 2015.
Address:
7328 N. Beach Drive, Fox Point, WI
Directions:
Along Lake Michigan at 7328 N. Beach Drive.
Hours:
Visible over fence.
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
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Visitor Tips and News About Mary Nohl's Concrete Art

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Mary Nohl Art Environment.

Mary Nohl Art Environment

The Mary Nohl Art Environment (also called the Fox Point Art Yard, Fox Point Witch's House and Mary Nohl's house) is a residence in the Milwaukee suburb of Fox Point, Wisconsin. The property, which is filled with folk art created by artist Mary Nohl (1914-2001), has numerous sculptures on view outside the house. The home, listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, has been the site of much local controversy between the affluent residents of the neighborhood, who resent the attention, and Wisconsin's art community, who want the property to be preserved.

[Stacey Williams-Ng, 07/03/2015]

Mary Nohl's art.

Mary Nohl's Concrete Art

Mary Nohl's house, and all of its outdoor statues, are scheduled to be dismantled and shipped to Sheboygan, where they will be reassembled on the grounds of the John Michael Kohler Art Center. Mary left all of her property to the Art Center when she died in 2001. The dismantling and move is expected to take place this summer. For now, the property is surrounded by a fence with a security guard.

The Kohler Art Center wanted to turn the existing property into a museum, since much of Mary's art had been made from junk found on nearby beaches. But Mary's upscale community never liked her quirky attraction. Kohler didn't even bother to apply for the zoning change that might have allowed it to stay.

Update: In a surprising reversal of fortune, Mary Nohl's house and art survived 2014. As of March 2015 it appears that they may be allowed to stay after all.

[RoadsideAmerica.com Team, 03/28/2014]

Mary Nohl's House.

Mary Nohl's Concrete Art

My sister-in-law, her kids and I visited Mary Nohl's House in Milwaukee WI. She had heard of her and knew I liked strange roadside attractions, so she took me there. Mary Nohl lived from 1914 to 2001. She made many strange concrete statues which decorate her yard. There are also very interesting carvings on her garage and house.

There is a fence that surrounds the area to avoid vandalism, but you can see plenty from the road. It is a very odd and interesting place to visit.

[Jeff Weinfurter, 01/04/2010]

Mary Nohl did attend art school, but her "outsider art"-style figures seem right out of the self-fraught School of Dementia Concretia. The work here is preserved by the Kohler Foundation, next door to a bunch of affluent lake front homes.

The Witch's House

This house outside of Milwaukee features lots of sculptures and artwork of fish, monsters, and humans. With an eerie feeling and urban legends, it became known as the witch's house. In 2005 it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places after local residents tried to have it demolished. It was created by Mary Nohl (1914-2001).

There is no admittance, it is fenced in but you can look at it from the street. There are talks of turning it into a museum but nothing has been decided yet.

[Michelle D, 09/10/2009]

Nearby Offbeat Places

Custard Stand Cow RowCustard Stand Cow Row, Glendale, WI - 3 mi.
Milwaukee's Milwaukee's "House Boat", Milwaukee, WI - 5 mi.
Safe House - Spy-Themed ClubSafe House - Spy-Themed Club, Milwaukee, WI - 8 mi.
In the region:
The Civil War Museum, Kenosha, WI - 39 mi.

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