Philanthropist Richard H. Driehaus founded the museum in one of the grandest residential buildings of 19th-century Chicago, the Gilded Age home of banker Samuel Mayo Nickerson. His vision was to influence today’s built environment by preserving and promoting architecture and design of the past. The architecture, interiors, collection, and exhibitions illuminate how the prevailing design philosophies of the period were interpreted by artists, architects, and designers at the waning of the 19th-century and the dawn of the 20th-century.
Today the Richard H. Driehaus Museum galleries feature surviving furnishings paired with elegant, historically-appropriate pieces from the Driehaus Collection of Fine and Decorative Arts, including important works by such celebrated designers as Herter Brothers and Louis Comfort Tiffany.
53 works by leading artists of the period
10 works portray prominent Chicago citizens during the late 19th and early 20th centuries
Designs by Tiffany, substantial silver pieces by Gorham and Tiffany Studios, plus photographs and prints