Newly-Acquired Rousseau Subject of January 14 Gallery Talk
For Immediate Release
December 31, 2009
Join Richard Rand, senior curator and curator of paintings and sculpture at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, for a look at the newly-acquired painting Farm in the Landes (House of the Garde) by Pierre Étienne Théodore Rousseau. The acquisition of this major nineteenth-century landscape painting brings to the public one of the greatest Barbizon School paintings, which until now has been held in private collections and has not been widely exhibited since 1946. This Looking at Lunchtime Talk is free and held on Thursday, January 14, at 12:30 pm, at the Clark.
Rousseau worked on Farm in the Landes for nearly twenty-five years. The painting had its origins in a trip to a region just south of Bordeaux, which the artist likened to Eden, in 1844. At that time he made a composition drawing and oil painting nearly as large as the final work. Upon returning to his Barbizon studio, Rousseau worked on the canvas over the ensuing decades. Monumental oaks, silhouetted against an intense blue sky, dominate a scene of a humble farm warmed by late afternoon sunlight. A dusty path leads through a rustic gate into a busy farmyard where a dog sits patiently, a man repairs a wagon wheel while a child looks on, a woman feeds cows, and a second woman hangs washing before a barn with a great thatched roof.
The series continues on Thursday, February 11, when curatorial assistant Sarah Hammond will look at works in the Material Witnesses: Photographs of Things exhibition. All talks take place at 12:30 pm on the second Thursday of every month. Attendees may purchase food at the Clark or bring a bag lunch to enjoy before or after the gallery talk.
The Clark is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, Massachusetts. The galleries are open 10 am to 5 pm, Tuesday through Sunday (open Mondays in July and August). Admission is free November through May. Adult admission is charged June 1 through October 31. Admission is always free for children 18 and younger, members, and students with valid ID. For more information, call 413-458-2303 or visit clarkart.edu.