The exhibit is called "Highlights of Italian Art."
The works were created between the 15th and the 20th centuries.
Thursday's event ran from 6 to 8 p.m. and included comments from James Cuno, the president of the Art Institute, the consul general of Italy, Alessandro Motta, as well as other luminaries.
The unveiling coincided with the 150th anniversary of the unification of Italy.
The exhibit opens to the public Friday.