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Gilbert Stuart’s Presidential Portraits Convene for “Hail to the Chiefs” Opening September 17 at the Clark

For Immediate Release

September 06, 2005

The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute’s George Washington by Gilbert Stuart will be joined by two other presidential portraits by the same artist when “Hail to the Chiefs: Gilbert Stuart’s Portraits of Washington, Jefferson, and Madison” opens on Saturday, September 17. The exhibition, offering an opportunity to reflect upon the role of portraiture in defining the image of the early American republic, runs through May 7, 2006.

Thomas Jefferson (1805-07) and James Madison (1805-07), on loan from Bowdoin College, will accompany George Washington (1796-1803) for this special exhibition. These portraits are the best-known portrayals of these early American leaders and continue to captivate viewers today.

Stuart (1755-1828), the preeminent American portrait painter of the late 18th- and early 19th-centuries, is most famous for painting the likenesses of the first five presidents of the United States. Born in Newport, RI, Stuart spent much of his early career in London and Dublin, where he first gained notoriety as an artist. Stuart returned to the United States in 1793 and painted George Washington a few years later, which led to commissions for portraits of other prominent political figures, including Thomas Jefferson and James Madison.

The Clark is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, Massachusetts. The galleries are open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm (daily in July and August). Admission June 1 through October 31 is $10 for adults, free for children 18 and younger, members, and students with valid ID. Admission is free November through May. For more information, call 413-458-2303 or visit www.clarkart.edu.


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