Barbara Bluhm-Kaul and Don Kaul are some of two of Chicago’s foremost collectors. Don is a life trustee at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, while Barbara is an Art Institute of Chicago trustee, as well as a member of the Expo Chicago art fair’s civic committee. When not involved in the Chicago art world, the couple has made a name for themselves making real-estate deals. In 2015, a condo in the city’s Streeterville neighborhood was sold for $10.375 million. It was once worth $9.3 million, and its value had risen $1 million in value because the owner, who was revealed by the Chicago Tribune to be Barbara, had flipped it by adding on a very expensive rooftop patio.

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Barbara Bluhm-Kaul and Don Kaul


Source of wealth:
Real estate; law (retired)

Collecting area:
Postwar and contemporary art

Top 200 appearance:

Fun fact:

When the couple lent Roy Lichtenstein’s Study for Crying Girl (1964) to the Art Institute of Chicago for its Lichtenstein retrospective, Barbara admitted that the piece, which normally hangs in her living room, affects her personally. "Sometimes I turn away because she's wiping a way a tear," she told Crain's.