Garden of J.-F Oberlin Museum in Waldersbach

In Waldersbach in Haute Brüche, the old presbytery of Pastor Oberlin, a man of the Lumières and founder of the kindergarten, has been transformed into a museum.

Several other buildings in the site have also been rehabilitated to link the main house to the gardens and courtyards in order to present a thematic site, as a reflection of the Pastor’s openness to the world.

The terrace facing the valley, next to the presbytery, offers a perfect place to the central part of the garden, the ‘botanical garden’.

The botanical garden

The garden of the vicarage gives the possibility of experiment the natural environment and to explore Oberlin’s interest for nature.

Three subjects structured the garden:

The botany and more specifically ethnobotany, or how to use medical, aromatic and culinary herbs, especially in the stone valley during the XVIIIth century.

The lessons and discovery of the flora stand in connection with an educational kitchen garden, an extension of the house of the children. To this a small hothouse will be also added.

The ornamental garden with the sundial stands in connection with Oberlin’s geography and molds, make possible the observation of Oberlin’s solar system.

Oberlin had several cabinets of curiosities. There he classified objects, amassed or received from his network of contacts from the Lumières, with a certain taste for miscellany and unprecedented.

The botanical garden is facing the presbytery. The sequencing of the plants within the wooden frame echoes directly the building’s façade dresses up with chestnut-wood shingles.

Design drawing and realization of the wooden frame at the foot of the presbytery.

In the children garden, a rediscovered fountain supplied by many springs, streaming between the buildings.

The vegetable garden or children garden: is linked in the same way as the botanical garden is to the presbytery, by its form as much as by its substance; the vegetable garden being a true extension of the Kinder House.

Summer 2011, visitors in the botanical collection.

A garden for children, as an heritage of Oberlin's educational concept.

District of Haute Brüche
Oberlin Museum, Waldersbach - 48°24’53.58’’N / 7°12’53.38’’E
Frédéric Jung, Architect - A. Corfa and JP Brazs, Museography
Budget / Area
152 450 € / 2 550 m2
National Trophy for rehabilitation 2004 (Oberlin Museum) Winner in 2004 of the Prize ‘Architecture and urban development’ in Alsace - "Musée de France" - Label "Maisons des illustres" 2012