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Arient Family Collection

Self-Taught Artists of the 20th Century

The Arient Family Collection is not only the product of 30 years of work by passionate and committed collectors, but also a reflection of their search for and appreciation of the best, wherever it might be found. The self-taught artists collected by Jim and Beth Arient never have pursued formal art training, but the passion, commitment, and intensity attached to their personal visions gives power to their art. The Arients have pursued “folk” and “outsider” art they find emotionally satisfying all over the U.S. – north and south, rural and urban, black and white neighborhoods. They avoid dealers and other collectors, preferring to visit and purchase directly from the artists. Their large and varied collection consists of work in all media – sculpture, painting, drawings, textiles, metalwork, and ceramics. Strength and beauty are the underlying qualities of these works, which show how these artists viewed the people and world around them.

This Exhibition was partially supported by a grant from the illinois Arts Council, a state agency.

Link to the Daily Herald's story on the exhibition:

May 5 - August 18, 2011





Koehnline Museum of Art
Des Plaines campus


September - May*
Monday - Friday
10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
11 a.m. - 4 p.m.

*Closed Friday, May 29

June - August
Monday - Thursday
10 a.m. - 7 p.m.

For special visits call:

Nathan Harpaz, Ph.D.
Manager and Curator