art in public spaces

About the Art in Public Spaces Program

The Connecting Communities Art in Public Spaces program generates a creative exchange between artists and the Sheboygan community. It develops interaction through the creation of new works of public art and connects people with their own creativity, while enabling a diverse public to build a cultural identity that facilitates positive change.


Open Studio with Artists Patricia Cazorla and Nancy Saleme

Saturday, August 18
12:00–4:00 p.m.

Join artists-in-residence Patricia Cazorla and Nancy Saleme in creating Threading a Dream, the newest work in the Art in Public Spaces program.

All ages


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Nancy Saleme and Patricia Cazorla are an aunt and niece collaborative-artist team. They are originally from Venezuela and live and work in New York City, NY.

They have been collaborating for the last seven years, although their partnership goes farther back. They are passionate about public art and firmly believe that art can widen perspectives and educate communities. They create artwork that is accessible and empowering for all, since they share a strong passion for social justice. They draw inspiration from the migrant working-class community, and their public art practice involves interaction with many layers of the community and a belief that art and artists should be socially engaged. They have been awarded public art commissions by museums and nonprofit organizations with the goal of activating cultural programming in underserved neighborhoods. They work in a range of different mediums like sculpture, painting, drawing, and digital painting.

During spring 2018, Saleme and Cazorla visited Sheboygan. During this research visit, they engaged the community through bilingual (Spanish and English), free workshops and artist lectures. They met a part of the Sheboygan community, including the Latinx, and fell in love with the city and its community.

The John Michael Kohler Arts Center and the Sheboygan community are excited to have these artists return in August and September to create a new public artwork downtown.

To participate in the making of this community piece, stay tuned to our website calendar and social media.


P.E.A.R.L. Opening Reception

Thursday, August 23
5:30 p.m.

Celebrate P.E.A.R.L. (Prism. Emitting. Abstracted. Radiant. Light.), the newest work in the Art in Public Spaces program. Created by artist and architect Michael Moore and his architecture firm tres birds workshop, P.E.A.R.L. is an interactive art installation located on Sheboygan’s City Green. The work was inspired by the Sheboygan community’s experiences with wild animals as well as the spatial connection between the John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Mead Public Library, and the future Art Preserve.

All ages


Tres birds workshop’s P.E.A.R.L. is an interactive art installation inspired by the Sheboygan community’s experiences with wild animals as well as by the spatial connection between the John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Mead Public Library, and the future Art Preserve. The art piece, located on the City Green between Mead Public Library and the Arts Center, offers a communal space where art, music, and literature merge.

In fall 2017, tres birds workshop architect and artist Michael Moore visited Sheboygan and met with community members. As part of a Connecting Communities residency at the Arts Center, he posed one question to participants: What experience have you had with wild animals in Sheboygan County? The question was meant to make contributors think about their current city situation—a fast-growing and diverse place—as well as the presence of animals in the Arts Center’s collection and the protected natural areas around the county where animals reside.

One of these safe spaces is the location of the ART Preserve, the new facility being built on Lower Falls Road to house the Arts Center’s collection of artist-built environments. Designed by tres birds workshop with the support of the John Michel Kohler Arts Center, the Art Preserve incorporates many natural and organic shapes in and around the building, including forms that recall moraines. In fact, the Art Preserve structure emerges from a landform. The multilevel terrain in the P.E.A.R.L. installation is made with dirt pulled from the landscape to allow the Art Preserve to be sited within the hillside.

The community conversations led to the architect exploring the intimate moment that happens between a person and a wild animal when they see each other for the first time. For many participants, the moment of awareness that those animals exist and coexist with us seemed magical. Those moments were clearly important for the people in the conversations and for Michael Moore, who immediately recognized that a primary point of focus in the piece was needed.

“The interactive sculpture has a main point, a source that emits and reflects light thorough dichroic glass, that is glass that reflects light of one color and transmits light of other colors,” said Moore. “This structure is nestled within three ‘moraines.’ It is like a point of beginning and end, in which the animals that are around the colorful piece are journeying toward. The orb will reveal what is already present but could not be seen; the seemingly ‘white’ light of the sun is a rainbow of color.” 

Tres birds workshop’s P.E.A.R.L. is a space meant to be physically accessed by the visitor. As living beings approach and perhaps enter the orb, they are met with refracted and overlapping elements of the essence of both light and water—that which we are all connected to and that which makes all beings common to one another. The transmitted light of the interior and the exterior refracted light of the orb will always be in flux, changing with the daily and seasonal position of the sun, the movement of the observer, and the humidity of the air. It is the subtleness of these changes that create a phenomenal experience.

To participate in the making of this community piece, stay tuned to our website calendar and social media!


Past Projects


826 N. 8th Street
Alleyway next to the Weill Center

Visit this stunning, large-scale installation by artist Mary Anne Kluth and the Sheboygan community. It will be a fixture in downtown Sheboygan for one year. This artwork was inspired by the natural land bridge in Virginia once owned by Thomas Jefferson. You simply have to see it in person!


Opening (Walk Through #1)
501 N 8th St.
Alleyway next to the Korthals Enterprises building

Opening (Walk Through #1) is a responsive public artwork enhancing community interactions with the architecture and open space in one of downtown Sheboygan’s alleyways. The construction of the piece will bridge the public space with the community that inhabits it. This, in turn, should mirror how the relationship between people, art, and environment can empower the city as a whole. As a Colombian immigrant, Gabriel finds it important to involve the community, especially the Latinx community, in this process as a way to integrate them and thus enrich the fabric of the Sheboygan community.

Made possible with support from the National Endowment for the Arts,
Bert L. and Patricia S. Steigleder Charitable Trust, and the Frederic Cornell Kohler Charitable Trust.
Additional support was provided by City of Sheboygan, Northern Wisconsin Regional Council of Carpenters Local 731, Quasius Construction Inc., Sheboygan Squared, and Stefanie H. Weill Center for the Performing Arts.