"Grandview - A Sample of Outsider Art in Wisconsin" Hollandale by yooperprof

Hollandale Travel Guide: 4 reviews and 7 photos

Labor of Love

In 1937, Wisconsin farmer Nick Engelbert wanted to do something a little bit different. He decided to cover every square inch of the exterior of his farmhouse with an intricate inlay, composed of concrete imbedded with all kinds of knickknacks, beads, shards of glass, househouse tools, buttons, you name it. After finishing that project, Englebert spent the next 15 years of his life creating more than 40 elaborate sculptural groupings, and he placed them in and around his decorated farmhouse. Grandview Farm - the work of an eccentric Midwesterner.

Fantasy comes to life

"If a man can't find happiness on a little farm in Wisconsin, he hasn't the makings of happiness in his soul."
Nick Engelbert, farmer & artist, 1881-1962

Grandview Farm is a prime example of "outsider art" - art which is produced by amateurs who are far removed from any academic or urban mainstream. It has been called "contemporary folk art," and Wisconsin abounds in it. There's something about this state which encourages oddness (originality?) - whether it be expressed in the genius of a Frank Lloyd Wright, or in the paranoid politics of a Joseph McCarthy, or the peculiar aesthetics of individuals like Nick Engelbert.

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  • In a nutshell:WAY off the beaten path
  • Last visit to Hollandale: May 1999
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (4)

Comments (2)

  • Dumpymotel's Profile Photo
    May 10, 2004 at 6:24 AM

    I wish I had the courage to turn my home into a sculpture gallery and museum....

  • craic's Profile Photo
    May 9, 2004 at 7:49 PM

    How stunning. What a great page. If you build it, they will come?


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