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For Immediate Release
April 26, 2021 

CLARK ART INSTITUTE Presents Opening Lecture for CLAUDE AND FRANÇOIS-XAVIER LALANNE: NATURE TRANSFORMED 


Williamstown, Massachusetts—On Saturday, May 8, in conjunction with the opening of its newest exhibition Claude and François-Xavier Lalanne: Nature Transformed, the Clark Art Institute will present a lecture by Kathleen Morris, Sylvia and Leonard Marx Director of Exhibitions and Curator of Decorative Arts, providing an overview of the exhibition. This lecture will be presented live over Zoom at 2 pm. 

Nature Transformed provides a fresh perspective on the work of innovative artists Claude and François-Xavier and marks the first time in more than forty years since an American art museum has dedicated an exhibition to their work. On view from May 8 to October 31, Nature Transformed reveals the power of their artistic imagination, their impressive command of technique, and their enduring visual appeal. 

The imaginative and beautifully crafted art of Claude and François-Xavier Lalanne reflects their deep sense of kinship between the human, animal, and vegetal worlds. From their earliest exhibition in 1964, the artists, who were married, repeatedly drew inspiration from flora and fauna and morphed these natural forms into something strange and new. In her works, Claude Lalanne (1924–2019) transformed familiar plants and animals into lyrical and sometimes surreal creations while François-Xavier Lalanne (1927–2008) turned his fascination with the mysterious inner life of animals into abstracted and refined sculptural forms that often concealed a practical function. In her talk, Morris, the exhibition’s curator, explores the stories behind the objects on display.

Claude & François-Xavier Lalanne: Nature Transformed is organized by the Clark Art Institute and curated by Kathleen M. Morris, Marx Director of Collections and Exhibitions and Curator of Decorative Arts. 

Major support for Claude & François-Xavier Lalanne: Nature Transformed is provided by Denise Littlefield Sobel. Significant funding is provided by Sylvia and Leonard Marx and by the Kenneth C. Griffin Charitable Fund, with additional support from Jeannene Booher, Agnes Gund, and Robert D. Kraus. The exhibition catalogue has been published with the generous support of Denise Littlefield Sobel, with additional support from the Kenneth C. Griffin Charitable Fund and Furthermore: a program of the J.M. Kaplan Fund. 

Visit clarkart.edu/events to register for this free lecture. 

ABOUT THE CLARK 

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 Tuesday through Sunday, 10 am to 5 pm. Admission is $20; free year-round for Clark members, children 18 and younger, and students with valid 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 clarkart.edu or call 413 458 2303. 

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