For Immediate Release
October 4, 2021

CLARK ART INSTITUTE Names Daphne Birdsey to lead advancement efforts

Williamstown, Massachusetts – The Clark Art Institute announced today that Daphne B. Birdsey has been selected to serve as its Chief Advancement Officer, leading the Institute’s philanthropy and membership programs. Birdsey is currently the Deputy Chief Development Officer for the Director’s Office at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. She will assume her role at the Clark on November 1, 2021.

“Daphne Birdsey is an important addition to the Clark’s leadership team, bringing extensive experience, and great energy and enthusiasm for deepening our connections with our members, our neighbors, and our supporters,” said Olivier Meslay, Hardymon Director of the Clark. “She joins our team at an exciting moment as we are beginning to envision a new generation of programs and initiatives that will enable us to enrich and extend the ways in which the Clark serves our audiences and our communities.” 

Birdsey has worked in the Metropolitan’s development office for thirteen years, where she has been a part of key fundraising initiatives that supported major projects at the museum. She also has managed both its Chairman’s Council and International Council.

“I am thrilled at the prospect of joining the Clark’s staff and becoming a member of the Williamstown community,” Birdsey said. “The Clark is such a unique and wonderful place, distinguished for its exceptional collections, dynamic exhibitions, and for the rigor of its Research and Academic Program. I am honored to have the opportunity to work in support of this remarkable institution and am eager to team with my new colleagues to ensure that our philanthropic efforts will provide a strong foundation to nurture and sustain the Clark’s goals for the future.”

Birdsey holds a master’s degree in visual arts administration from New York University and a bachelor’s degree in political science from Davidson College, Davidson, North Carolina.  

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, consisting of more than 275,000 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, which has a three-star rating in the Michelin Green Guide, is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Its 140-acre campus includes miles of hiking and walking trails through woodlands and meadows, providing an exceptional experience of art in nature. Galleries are open 10 am to 5 pm Tuesday through Sunday and daily in July and August. Advance timed tickets are required. Admission is $20; free year-round for Clark members, all visitors age 21 and under, and students with a valid student ID. Free admission is available through several programs, including First Sundays Free; a local library pass program; and EBT Card to Culture. For more information on these programs and more, visit or call 413 458 2303.

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