Ocean Muse by Cambid-J Choy


Visual Arts
The arts have always been important at Fernwood. Founder Kay Boydston was a weaver, dyer, silversmith, miniaturist, needle worker, and print maker. That tradition continues in periodic exhibits of work from Fernwood’s early days and in monthly classes offered by the Niles Handweavers Guild. 

The Clark Art Gallery displays art on nature and garden themes in exhibits that change bimonthly. The work of local sculptors is occasionally showcased in the gardens.

Even the landscapes at Fernwood are works of art, being carefully designed to complement the natural areas nearby.

Clark Lecture Hall and Art Gallery
Exhibits at Fernwood's Clark Lecture Hall and Art Gallery change every two months and feature various mediums. The Clark Gallery was generously funded by Clark Equipment Company, and later enhancements were made possible by a gift from Leo J. McKernan.

On occasion, the Gallery is used for private events. Please call ahead to ensure that your next visit includes viewing the beautiful artwork on display.

No admission required to view the exhibits and/or to attend an artist reception/talk.

Coming this Fall!

4th Annual Juried Landscape Exhibition.
Fernwood Juried Photography Exhibition.


Clark Art Gallery
Diane Tesler
Back Home Again
Friday, May 31 – Sunday, July 29.
Artist Reception, Sunday, June 3, 2–4pm. Artist Talk at 3pm.

East Coast painter Diane Tesler never thought a 1986 trip to her friend's studio in Indiana would lead her to restore first a house and now a prominent 1889 Odd Fellows lodge hall building on Main Street in downtown Kewanna, Indiana. It is from this small town perspective that the world-traveled and Hoosier-born artist creates her arrestingly poetic paintings. Tesler began her painting career in Hawaii, drawn to the quality of light and a compelling subject -- the abandoned cars scattered around the island. These discoveries, and the power of light to reveal form and beauty of the discarded object, have remained a constant in her work ever since. She is also nationally known for her still life and landscape paintings.

June Cary
Friday, August 3 – Sunday, September 30
Artist Reception on Sunday, August 5, 2–4pm.

June Cary, one of Niles' most prominent and well known fine artists of the last half century.  Although Cary's body of work includes seascapes, beach scenes and still-lifes, it is her garden scapes that predominate. Created in an impressionistic style she loves to experiment with unusual color schemes and expressive layers of texture. The compositions are anchored by garden fixtures including fences, steps, paths, and buildings. June works from photographs she has taken from all over the world, often from public gardens such as Fernwood in Niles and Mackinac Island's Grand Hotel. She often pieces together many of her photographs to create original compositions to inspire her. She lets a painting happen, working fast to maintain the spontaneity.  She has had more than 51-woman shows and been included in many group shows throughout Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Florida. Her pastels were featured in an article in the June 1998 issue of American Artist Magazine.

Curator's Gallery
Glass Blowing Artists
Wednesday, June 6 – Sunday, July 22

Native American Basketry
Wednesday, July 25 – Sunday, September 9

Trillium Hall

Kathryn Barbin
Organically Drawn

Wednesday, June 6 – Sunday, July 22

Beautiful drawings and paintings.

David Allen
Wednesday, July 25 – Sunday, September 9

Allen is a 67-year-old artist and has been painting since the age of sixteen.  He has ventured as far as the Peter Barlow Gallery in Chicago and the Denise Debroe Gallery in Manhattan. Allen has paintings in the South Bend Museum of Art permanent collection as well as the Mid-West Museum of American Art in Elkhart.  He is known for local city and neighborhood scenes.  He works outside, on location, in real time summer and winter.  He also paints non-representational work in my studio.


Sculpture Fernwood
 Sculpture Fernwood, an outdoor sculpture exhibit placed throughout the grounds at Fernwood, is curated by Father Austin I. Collins, CSC, Professor of Sculpture in the Department of Art, Art History and Design at the University of Notre Dame.

Take Five


Artist Patrick Dougherty created Fernwood's new stick sculpture, Take Five, in April 2014. Made from locally harvested willow and dogwood, Take Five is composed of five rooms that lean into each other connected by doorways and alleys. The roof is an oculus, as in an eye, opening at the top of each room, providing views of blue sky and sunshine. People are amazed at the size, sturdiness, and sweeping design of Take Five. Explore the sculpture, located adjacent to the South Vista garden, on the way to Fernwood's Railway Garden. Click here to learn more about Patrick Dougherty and Take Five.

Other Sculptures at Fernwood

Aside from the ten sculptures in Sculpture Fernwood, and Patrick Dougherty's stick sculpture, you will find two other sculptures on Fernwood's grounds, bringing the total to thirteen! 


 by Fritz Olsen

John and Mary Ann Butkovich of South Bend donated Aviary, a kinetic sculpture created by Fritz Olsen, an artist from Sawyer. Aviary is on exhibit in the entry garden outside the Visitors Center. Another Olsen sculpture, Sheltered Heart, is on exhibit as part of Sculpture Fernwood.  

June sculpture

 by David Skora

June is an attractive new sculpture in the Hosta Bowl garden, in memory of June Thomas from South Bend, Indiana. June loved Fernwood. Her son, Roger Thomas, and son-in-law, artist David Skora, originally from New Buffalo and now living in Connecticut, visited Fernwood after June's passing and thought a sculpture in her name on Fernwood's grounds would be a fitting memorial to Mrs. Thomas.