Image: Rembrandt van Rijn, Christ Preaching (La Petite Tombe), c. 1652. Etching, engraving, and drypoint.
Collection of Religious Art
The Thrivent Financial Collection of Religious Art is unique among corporate art collections with its focus on original works on paper and religious subject matter. Began in 1982, there are now more than 1,100 objects included in the collection, which ranges chronologically from a miniature illustration for a 13th-century medieval choir book to avant-garde lithographs and linocuts from the late 20th century. Comprised of eight centuries of art reflecting the Western Christian religious tradition, the collection presents an impressive range of exemplars of Western art history, from Albrecht Dürer to Rembrandt van Rijn and Pablo Picasso.
Fulfilling its mission to provide cultural and educational opportunities to its members and community, Thrivent strives to make its special art collection accessible through public lectures and gallery shows, traveling exhibitions of works in the collections, and a source of ongoing scholarship. This collection is a dynamic, shared part of Thrivent's heritage and commitment to supporting the arts, culture, education and the community.
Curious Creatures: Animals on Paper highlights the role of wildlife, domestic animals, and legendary beings in religious drawings and prints. Animals are portrayed in images across all cultures and time periods from prehistoric to contemporary art, but their role extends far beyond observation of nature. Legends through the centuries have inspired creatures such as unicorns, dragons, and demons.
Real and imagined animals are significant in Western religious art. With many roles in Christian stories from Genesis to Revelation, they appear as illustrations of scripture and representative of traditions. From charming companions of Saints to spectacular demons, these creatures add visual variety in Christian imagery and enhance our understanding of religious tradition.
Image: Attributed to Martino di Bartolomeo, St. John the Baptist Preaching, late 14th century. Gouache, ink, gilding on vellum.
Location625 Fourth Ave. S.
Monday - Friday
9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Curator Joanna Reiling Lindell can be contacted in advance for individual or group tours of the collection.