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For Immediate Release

October 15, 2010

Clark’s Renoir Collection to be Presented at the Prado
In Spain’s First Monographic Exhibition Devoted to the Artist

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA, October 15, 2010 - Extending its commitment to global outreach through cultural exchange, the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute is sharing major works from its collection with two leading museums in Spain. Passion for Renoir, the first monographic Renoir exhibition ever presented in Spain, opens at the Museo Nacional del Prado in Madrid on October 19 and will offer European audiences the rare opportunity to view the Clark’s renowned collection of some of the artist’s finest works. The critically acclaimed Picasso Looks at Degas, co-organized by the Clark and the Museu Picasso, opens today in Barcelona, following its successful exhibition in Williamstown.

Passion for Renoir: The Collection of the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute presents the Clark’s complete collection of thirty-one canvases by the Impressionist master. The exhibition, featuring some of Renoir’s most important early works, explores Sterling Clark’s 40-year pursuit of masterworks by the artist he considered “the greatest colorist of the modern age.” Among the works included in the exhibition: Self-Portrait (ca.1875), Portrait of Madame Monet (Madame Claude Monet Reading) (ca.1874), A Box at the Theater (At the Concert) (1880), Onions (1881), and two monumental nudes, Blonde Bather (1881) and The Bath (Girl arranging her Hair) (1885). Passion for Renoir: The Collection of the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute will be on view until February 6, 2011.

Clark once remarked “Renoir would have painted just as well in Titian’s time. He, Degas, Manet at his best, Corot, etc. are brothers of Titian, Van Dyck, Rubens.” Passion for Renoir represents the first time the Clark has exhibited its full Renoir collection outside of the museum, and provides a unique opportunity to consider these works in the context of the Prado’s extraordinary collection of Old Masters.

As part of this important cultural exchange, an exhibition on the nude from the Prado’s Royal Collections will be presented at the Clark in 2014.

Picasso Looks at Degas, at the Museu Picasso, explores Picasso’s direct response to Degas’s work through a presentation of more than one hundred works drawn from the rich collections of the co-organizers, along with loans more than 40 museums and private collections worldwide. Among the works paired in the exhibition are: Picasso’s Nude Wringing her Hair (1952) and Degas’s Combing the Hair (La Coiffure) (c. 1892-1896) and Picasso’s Sebastià Junyer Vidal (1903) and Degas’s In a Café (L’Absinthe) (1875-76). Its American debut, Picasso Looks at Degas, drew record crowds at the Clark in the summer of 2010 and garnered widespread critical notice. Picasso Looks at Degas will be on view until January 16, 2011.

These exhibitions precede the planned launch next year of an international tour of masterpieces from the Clark’s collection of nineteenth-century French paintings. Additional details will be released in the months to come.

The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute

The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute is one of the few institutions in the world with a dual mission as both an art museum and a center for research and higher education in the visual arts. Its superb collections, distinctive exhibitions, and scholarly community foster an environment that is often described as a greenhouse for ideas.

The museum is perhaps best known for the quality of the Impressionist and Old Master paintings in its permanent collection and for its groundbreaking exhibitions. Scholarly inquiry and intellectual engagement define the Clark’s Research and Academic Program, which has achieved international distinction for its residential visiting Fellows program and global academic initiatives. Located on a 140-acre campus in the Berkshires of Western Massachusetts, the Clark sponsors one of the nation’s leading master’s programs in art history in cooperation with nearby Williams College.



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