The Weird & The Wonderful!

This is a listing of links to some of the world’s most unusual outdoor art by a host of genuinely original & unique artists from all around the globe.  Many of these folks dedicated a large part of their lives to creating some of these projects.   Often alone, against all odds, and against all bureaucrats.  Let this then be a celebration of their spirit, tenacity, and creativity.  No matter how strange!  The urge to create is indeed a powerful & moving force.  Bless them all!

Anytime we have been able to find a good book on any of these works or artists, we have indicated it in red above the link.  And if you know of any others, please…send us the link!  If you have something truly unique in your area, we will submit it to the folks at Roadside America.Com.   They are constantly searching for & cataloging the unusual.

NOTE:  The links below are from all around the world and some may require translating unless your language skills are vastly superior to mine.  They are also from many sources and some are subject to coming & going occasionally, so if you find any that are down, try back later.  If they appear to be permanently “dead”, please report them to Admin and we will search for an alternative source.


Watts Towers, Simon Rodia
 – Los Angeles, California
One of the most amazing works of art ever accomplished by one man!

http://www.trywatts.com/tower_tour/STOP01/START.HTM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watts_Towers
…and some great shots in a Flikr Album…
http://flickr.com/groups/47999088@N00/pool/

 

The Palaise Ideal, Ferdinand ChevalHauterives FranceApril 1879. During one of his rounds, Ferdinand Cheval, rural French postman, 43, stumbles against such an odd stone that it awakes a dream. He devotes the next 33 years of his life to build a dream palace in his garden alone.

http://www.facteurcheval.com/en/history/palace.html

https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/le-palais-ideal

 

Fred Smith’s Concrete Park – Phillips, Wisconson
One man’s vision of what sculpture ought to be.
Courtesy of Roadside America.Com
http://www.roadsideamerica.com/attract/WIPHIconcrete.html

 

Wickham Stone Park, Enoch Tanner Wickham – Near Palmyra, Tennessee
20 years worth of Concrete Folk art.
http://wickhamstonepark.com/index.htm
http://www.simplephotographs.com/wickham/bigger.html

 

Stark’s Glen, Glenn Stark – Kingman, Kansas
Wood & Concrete make up this wonderful collection.
http://www.kansastravel.org/glennstark1.htm

 

The Orange Show Center for Visionary Art – Houston, Texas
A whole collection of Texas-style homegrown art oddities.
http://www.orangeshow.org/

 

Chauvin Sculpture Garden – NSU Campus near Houma, Louisiana
A terrific collection sponsored by the Kohler Foundation (See the very last link).
http://www.nicholls.edu/folkartcenter/photo.html
and another link to Kenny Hills’ work…
http://ucmmuseum.com/kennyhill.htm

 

The Coral Castle, Ed Leedskalnin – Homestead, Florida
It defies logic & science!  The amazing life’s work that one man dedicated to an unrequited love!
http://www.mysteriousworld.com/Journal/2003/Winter/Artifacts/

 

Mary Nohl’s House, Mary Nohl  –  Fox Point, Wisconson
The Extreme Yard Art of “The Witche’s House”.
http://www.interestingideas.com/roadside/wisc/nohl/nohl1.htm

 

Stonehenge Clones – All Over the US
If you’ve ever wanted to build one of your own…you won’t be the first!
http://www.luckymojo.com/stonehenge.html

 

Paradise Garden, Howard Finster – Near Summerville, Georgia
Another “man with a mission”!
http://www.interestingideas.com/out/finster/index.htm

 

La Maison Picassiette, Raymonde Isidore – Chartres, France
Yet another French folk artist extraordinaire.  Make sure you tour all the albums, as there is a lot to see & admire.
http://www.thejoyofshards.co.uk/picassiette/index.shtml
…and the “official” website in French…
http://pnoirjean.free.fr/tourisme/centre/picassiet/picassiet.html

 

Various Works by Dionisio Rodriguez – All Across America
Numerous “Trabajo Rustico” projects & installations by a master craftsman.
If you’ve seen “Gone With The Wind”, you’ve seen his work here…
www.bluffton.edu/…/oldmill/pugh.html

 

Las PozasEdward James – Outside Xilitla (in La Huasteca, in the northeastern state of Mexico, San Luis Potosi)
The magical city built by Edward James in the jungles of Mexico.  So strange & wonderful, it was hard to decide which list to put it on so I included here as well as under “Artful Gardens”.
Also, see the wonderful book about the man & his passion in the Book listings on the Homepage!
http://www.junglegossip.com/index.htm

 

Nek Chand’s Gardens, Nek Chand – Chandigarh, India
Quite possibly the world’s largest garden art garden!
See our Book listing on the Homepage for a great photo essay of this amazing place!
https://nekchand.com/

 

Salvation Mountain, Leonard Knight – Niland, California
This is the man-made art-mountain in the California desert near the Salton Sea.
http://www.salvationmountain.us/

 

Niki de Saint Phalle –  Capalbio, Italy
Indescribable & amazing mosaic constructs on an enormous scale!  Make sure to take “The Walk in the Garden”!
http://www.nikidesaintphalle.com/

 

St. Eom’s Pasaquan, Eddie Owens Martin  –  Near Buena Vista, Georgia
Yard Art as a pathway to Sainthood.  Really!
http://www.pasaquan.com/
http://www.interestingideas.com/roadside/eom/eom1.htm

 

Antoni Gaudi – Spain
Yeah, yeah, I know, he was one of the greatest architects that ever lived, but his work screams “ART”!……”Strange & Wonderful Concrete ART!”
There are several remarkable books about Gaudi & his work in the Book listings on the Homepage.
http://www.gaudiclub.com/ingles/I_VIDA/i_menu.html

 


And, a Very Special “Thank You” to The Kohler Foundation of Wisconson!
A terrific organization dedicated to the preservation of American Folk Art.  Give these folks a great big hand!
http://www.kohlerfoundation.org/