The Lunder Center galleries are temporarily closed.


For Immediate Release

September 19, 2014

Williamstown, MA—The Clark Art Institute presents the lecture “Past, Present, and Future: The Clark’s Research and Academic Program (RAP)” on Sunday, September 28 at 3 pm in the auditorium. Darby English, RAP Starr Director, leads the conversation, which looks at the formation and growth of the program and the future directions it may take in light of trends in the study and criticism of the visual arts.

Participants include John Onians, FSA, professor emeritus, University of East Anglia, Norwich; Mariët Westermann, vice president, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; Michael Ann Holly, Starr Director emeritus, RAP and Clark Visiting Professor, Williams College Graduate Program in the History of Art.

“Past, Present, and Future” is the final installment of the “Clark Inspired” series, featuring leading scholars and museum professionals who share a distinctive bond forged in Williamstown and at the Clark. The lecture is free and open to the public; reservations are not required.

John Onians was the first director of RAP when it was founded in the 1990s. He received a postgraduate diploma in the history of European art from London University, where he completed his PhD in history of art. Over the course of his academic career he has held numerous scholarships and has been a visiting professor at universities and institutions in Europe, Asia, the United States, and Australia, and was founding editor of the journal Art History.

Mariët Westermann was provost and chief academic officer of New York University Abu Dhabi, having started the development of the campus in 2007, before joining the Andew W. Mellon Foundation. At NYU, she was also director of the Institute of Fine Arts for six years, after serving as associate director of RAP, and as assistant and associate professor at Rutgers University. She received her BA magna cum laude in history from Williams College, and her MA and PhD in the history of art at NYU's Institute of Fine Arts.

Michael Ann Holly, who served as Starr director of RAP for fourteen years (1999–2013), is an art historian renowned for her work on historiography and the theory of art history. She received her PhD from Cornell in 1981 and co-founded the Visual and Cultural Studies Graduate Program at the University of Rochester, where she taught for thirteen years. As Clark Visiting Professor, she is teaching Methods of Art History and Criticism, a graduate seminar, and Twelve Books, an undergraduate seminar.


The Clark’s Research and Academic Program is internationally recognized as one of the leading centers for research in the visual arts and has established collaborations with partner institutions including the Getty Research Institute; the Institut National d’Histoire de l’Art (France); Institute of Art History of the Estonian Academy of Arts; Power Institute at the University of Sydney; University of the Philippines Diliman; Asia Art Archive (Hong Kong); Asian Civilizations Museum (Singapore); and the University of Witwatersrand (South Africa), among others.

In addition to hosting its fellowship program on the Clark’s Williamstown campus, RAP maintains an active series of conferences, colloquia, symposia, and scholarly conversations presented at venues around the globe. The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Getty Foundation have provided generous support to these programs. The Manton Foundation established an endowment to support the activities of the RAP program in 2007; in 2008, the Starr Foundation endowed the program’s directorship. Darby English was appointed STARR director of the program in April 2013.


The Clark Art Institute is one of a small number of institutions globally that is both an art museum and a center for research, critical discussion, and higher education in the visual arts. Opened in 1955, the Clark houses exceptional European and American paintings and sculpture, extensive collections of master prints and drawings, English silver, and early photography. Acting as convener through its Research and Academic Program, the Clark gathers an international community of scholars to participate in a lively program of conferences, colloquia, and workshops on topics of vital importance to the visual arts. The Clark library, open to the public with more than 240,000 volumes, is one of the nation’s premier art history libraries. The Clark also houses and co-sponsors the Williams College Graduate Program in the History of Art.

The Clark opened its expanded facilities on July 4, 2014, unveiling new and enhanced spaces that accommodate the continued growth of the Institute’s programs. Included in this final stage of the project are the new 42,600-square-foot Clark Center designed by Tadao Ando Architect & Associates, expansion and renovation of the original Museum Building and the ongoing renovation of the Manton Research Center by Selldorf Architects, and a sweeping redesign of the grounds by Reed Hilderbrand Landscape Architecture. The first phase of the campus expansion project was completed in 2008 with the opening of the Lunder Center at Stone Hill, a striking conservation and exhibitions facility also designed by Tadao Ando.

The Clark is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Opening season hours: Galleries open daily from July 4 through October 13, 2014, 10 am to 5 pm. From October 14, 2014 through June 30, 2015: Galleries open Tuesday through Sunday, 10 am to 5 pm. Admission is $20 through October 31, 2014 and free year-round for Clark members, children 18 and younger, and students with valid ID. For more information, visit or call 413 458 2303.

Press contact:
Amanda Powers
The Clark
[email protected]
413 458 0471