Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum

Combining Classic Art With Modern Style

Wausau, WI
Completed: Summer 2021


Located on Wausau’s East side, the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum has been an icon of the small Wisconsin community since its founding in 1973.

With the help of Wausau Tile and the Samuels Group, Kathy Foley, Director of the museum, was able to realize a dream of building a rooftop sculpture garden. Kathy commented, "Sculpture Garden involved some of the best minds on the museum staff, Wausau Tile, and the Samuels Group. And the credit really goes to Wausau Tile, who used an innovative design that locks into the paver system to ensure the stability of the sculptures on our rooftop.”

Wanting to create a unique look by setting pavers on the diagonal relative to the entrance was quickly ruled out due to increased labor and product waste, however Wausau Tile was able to stamp each paver to create the illusion of diagonal set pavers, reducing time and costs while still keeping in line with the overall aesthetics of the original design by the Samuels Group.

The museum opted for low steel benches to allow guests easy viewing of the entire Rooftop Sculpture Garden, while also being able to take in the beautiful scenery surrounding the garden. In addition, steel armchairs were provided and strategically placed to assist guests needing more stability. Custom metal pedestals were created for the sculptures and aluminum planters were added and modified for self-watering to allow for easier landscaping while reducing maintenance.

A final challenge the museum faced was how they were going to situate a 1928 bronze sculpture by Harriet Whitney Frishmuth. Wausau Tile was able to design and fabricate an infinity fountain for the bronze sculpture to rest on. It’s peacefulness and tranquility capture your attention as you look to the northern end of the Rooftop Sculpture Garden.  


  • Samuels Group