The Lunder Center galleries are temporarily closed.


For Immediate Release
September 3, 2015

Williamstown, Massachusetts—“Color Change and Meaning in the Paintings of Vincent van Gogh,” a free public lecture by Ann Hoenigswald, Senior Conservator of Paintings at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., will be held at the Clark Art Institute on Sunday, September 13 at 3 pm. The lecture, which coincides with the final day of the Van Gogh and Nature exhibition, will be held at the Clark’s Lunder Center at Stone Hill.

Vincent van Gogh wrote frequently in his letters about the importance of color in his paintings, but it is known that some of his tones have faded over time. Reflecting on the recent cleaning of the artist’s 1888 painting Farmhouse in Provence—cleaned specifically for the Clark’s exhibition—Hoenigswald discusses whether these changes in color, as well as changes in the textural quality of his works, have altered the artist’s intent or meaning.

Ann Hoenigswald received her undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania in art history and history, and her MA in art conservation from Oberlin College and the Intermuseum Conservation Association.

Since joining the National Gallery of Art in 1977, she has treated many masterpieces in the collection. Although she has worked on paintings from the thirteenth through the eighteenth centuries, her focus has been on late nineteenth-century and early modern works. Her treatments of Edouard Manet’s paintings and those of Vincent van Gogh and Pablo Picasso have been widely celebrated. Most recently, she finished the restoration of Mary Cassatt’s Little Girl in a Blue Armchair (1878).

She was awarded the Kress Paired Fellowship in Conservation and the History of Art from the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts (CASVA) (1998–1999) and was an invited museum scholar at the Getty Center (2011). She was also invited to be the visiting conservator at the Courtauld Institute in London (2012). In addition to treating paintings, she has researched the process of painting and the materials and techniques of Impressionist and post-Impressionist artists as well as early twentieth-century painters.


The Clark Art Institute, located in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts, 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 is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Galleries are open Tuesday through Sunday, 10 am to 5 pm (open Labor Day, September 7). Admission is $20; free year-round for Clark members, children 18 and younger, and students with valid ID. For more information, visit or call 413 458 2303.

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