Ann Norton Sculpture Gardens
The great secret of the gardens, hidden from the outside world by green foliage, is the monumental sculptures. The silent, mysterious forms, built over a period of 15 years, were intended to be discovered as surprises amid the dense, jungle-like vegetation. They may resonate with reference to art of the past, to far-distant lands, but they are modern and timeless: unique to this artist’s vision. It is a rare gift to experience the union of this mysterious and powerful art and the naturalness of the landscape.
At Ann’s request before she died in 1982, Sir Peter Smithers devised for her the “Principles for the Garden”, which include the provision that the garden’s special distinction be a rare palm collection. With over 250 rare palm species, this is one of the biggest public collections in Florida. The many native berry and fruit-bearing plants reflect Ann’s love of nature and her commitment to preserving a natural sanctuary not only for the community but for wildlife too.
Created over four decades, Ann Norton’s works in bronze, stone, and wood inhabit the studio like a forest, alluring the visitor. Guests are greeted by larger than life models, armatures, and studies done for her larger works. Ann’s spirit pervades the studio through her Northern Cedar works, which are profoundly modern, yet evoke a time past.
Re-designed in 1934 by Palm Beach Architect Marion Sims Wyeth, the modest home features signature Wyeth details, such as coquina pathways, pecky cypress ceilings, and beautiful gardens. In 1948 Ralph Norton invited Wyeth to design a studio for his wife Ann. The home, studio, and gardens were added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1995.
Hours & Admission
Wednesday thru Sunday – 10 am – 4 pm
Closed for the months of July and August
West Palm Beach, FL 33401
(561) 832-5328 phone
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