Created by the most celebrated folk artist in America, Rev. Howard Finster (1916-2001), Paradise Garden is an internationally acclaimed 4-acre art environment. Here, Finster crafted more than 46,000 works of contemporary American folk art including album covers for R.E.M. and The Talking Heads. Nearly every museum in America has an example of Finster’s art including the National Gallery of Art, Library of Congress, and Smithsonian American Art Museum. Yet, it is his personal art environment and garden in Summerville is considered to be Finster’s most important creation.
On the National Register for Historic Places, the 4-acre site has a mosaic garden with embellished raised beds, art sculptures from found objects, concrete grotto walls filled with art reliefs, 200 ft. of mosaic sidewalks, a 300 ft. outdoor gallery, and 18 separate art sculptures, murals, and buildings including the five-story World’s Folk Art Church. Paradise Garden has welcomed over 47,000 visitors from 33 countries and is considered one of the top art environments in the world. CNN called Paradise Garden, “The Souths most inspired garden.” Rev. Howard Finster has been called both “the grandfather of Southern Folk Art” and “the Andy Warhol of the South.” Paradise Garden and Howard Finster has been featured on Headline News Network (division of CNN), NY Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Esquire Magazine, and Life Magazine.
Paradise Garden is open to the public for self-guided tours Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., year-round and offers three 5-Star Airbnb overnight lodgings. The outdoor historic environment is pandemic friendly with a picnic area, outdoor handwashing station, and outdoor restroom. General admission is $15, seniors $10, and children under 12 free with all proceeds benefiting the nonprofit supporting operations and maintenance of the historic site.
Stay in touch for information about the annual Finster Fest event!
200 North Lewis Street
Summerville, Georgia 30747