Special Collection

Albert Krehbiel

permanent collection


Albert H. Krehbiel was the third son of J.J. (Anna) Krehbiel, founder of the carriage factory in which Carriage Factory Art Gallery is now housed. Albert helped in the family business, doing finishing work and painting the carriages. While a student at the School of Design and Painting in Topeka, Kansas, he was studying under the European-trained George Stone when his work there caught the eye of the director of the Art Institute of Chicago who encouraged him to apply. Krehbiel enrolled in 1898, became an instructor there in 1902 and then received a traveling scholarship that enabled him to study abroad at the Académie Julian in Paris. While there he received four gold medals, more than any American artist ever has, and the coveted Prix de Rome. In 1905 two of his neoclassical paintings were selected for the prestigious Paris Salon. While his education in Europe focused on realism he evolved into more of an impressionist. He was selected from 22 other artists in 1907 to paint 11 wall and two ceiling murals for the Illinois Supreme Court building. He was a member of the Cliff Dwellers of Chicago and taught for 39 years at the Art Institute. In 1983 Carriage Factory Art Gallery opened in his father’s 1883 carriage factory. Selected works of Krehbiel are on special display in the mezzanine gallery, and most of it is for sale. (Excerpts from The Story of a Kansas Renaissance, For the Sake of Art, pages 118-119, by Cynthia Mines, 2015.)