John Michael Kohler Arts Center

The John Michael Kohler Arts Center is home to a nationally recognized collection of art by self-taught artists. This new addition and renovation reinforces the Center’s already-strong educational programs and link to the community by creating a highly-visible and unified arts precinct.

The design strives to balance public display areas with more private, contemplative spaces. New elements include a sun-filled entrance hall, the Carriage House  Cafe, and the Glass House, which provides year-round viewing of the outdoor sculpture and perennial garden.  The public areas of the Center are balanced by more private, contemplative spaces, which orient visitors and relieve museum fatigue.


Sheboygan, WI


60,000 sf new + 33,000 sf renovated


Completed 1999

At the core of the arts center is an innovative multi-disciplinary educational and performance space that highlights the artistic process and collaboration between artists. It features exposed structural systems of large steel beams that support a wooden purlin system.  This allows theatrical and exhibit lighting to be highly flexible and adaptable to a wide range of performances and installations.

New galleries have been added, including a permanent space for the collection of Arts/Industry work, the self-taught art collection, and temporary exhibits. The museum was designed to meet stringent temperature, light, and humidity archival requirements for these sensitive and fragile artifacts.