New Video Shows How Nature Inspired Wave of Door County’s Early Artists

Door County wasn’t always a destination for artists, but when a wave of artists, photographers and performers were drawn to the peninsula by the natural landscape in the 1930s – 1950s, it changed the county forever.  

The latest video in the Our Door County video series from the Door County Visitor Bureau tells the story of how nature inspired Door County’s early artists, and how those artists in turn celebrated nature, helping to preserve the landscape in the face of development.

Pioneering landscape architect Jens Jensen was among the first to recognize that Door County could become a retreat for the creative mind. After a career shaping the public parks of Chicago, Jensen retired to Door County, where he established The Clearing Folk School in Ellison Bay. The video tells the story of how Jensen used The Clearing to inspire other artists and writers, like the county’s first gallery owner, Gerhard Miller, and the founder of the Peninsula School of Art, Madeline Tourtelot

Door County’s arts history is rich and too vast for any single video, but this short documentary, produced by Peninsula Filmworks, gives a glimpse of the origins and the ongoing impact the arts have on preservation.

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