World-Class Art, Right on Campus
Elmhurst’s collection of Chicago Imagist and Abstractionist art is among the best in the nation.
Focusing on artists working in Chicago between about 1950 and the present, the collection displays a broad range of artistic ideas and inﬂuences.
The collection dates to 1971, when Elmhurst received federal funding to purchase art for the newly built A.C. Buehler Library. The University focused its collection on works by a group of emerging and affordable Chicago artists—a group that would later be known as the Chicago Imagists.
The ﬁrst 10 pieces included Jim Nutt’s Toot Toot Woo Woo, Roger Brown’s Performance, Christina Ramberg’s Glimpsed, and Miyoko Ito’s Chinoiserie.
Over the years, the University has added many more works to the collection, thanks to matching grants from the Illinois Arts Council, gifts from artists, and generous donors. Today, the University’s professional collection comprises more than 150 works of art, including many important works by major Imagists and Abstractionists.
Visit the Collection
The Elmhurst University Art Collection is available for viewing, and we welcome visitors to browse our artwork in the A.C. Buehler Library on campus.
The collection is a testament to the University’s former curator and director of exhibitions, the late Suellen Rocca, a trailblazing artist herself.