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For Immediate Release
September 8, 2021

CLARK ART INSTITUTE PRESENTS LECTURE ON ARTISTS LES LALANNE BY WRITER ADRIAN DANNATT


Williamstown, Massachusetts—On Sunday, September 26, writer, curator, and independent art historian Adrian Dannatt presents the lecture “Bohemian Luxe: The Strange Journey of Les Lalanne from Brancusi’s Woodpile to Marc Jacobs’ Catwalk.” This free talk will be presented in the Clark’s auditorium and on Zoom and Facebook Live at 3 pm.

Dannatt, author of the 2018 book Francois-Xavier & Claude Lalanne: In the Domain of Dreams, provides an overview of the artists’ spectacular careers, with a special focus on their roots in the Parisian art world of the 1960s when they worked alongside other artists and designers of the time. Having begun their careers as penniless sculptors and painters in the poverty of postwar Paris, François-Xavier and Claude Lalanne eventually became two of the most successful stars of contemporary art and design, adored by all the world’s headiest fashion and design elite. But they never forgot their earliest formative years living and working in the Impasse Ronsin, a rundown cul de sac where they were part of a vibrant community—sharing only one lavatory—with such famous artists as Constantin Brancusi, Max Ernst, Jean Tinguely, and Niki de Saint-Phalle.

This event will be presented live in the Clark's auditorium and broadcast simultaneously on Zoom and Facebook Live. No registration is needed to attend the live event, but registration is required for the Zoom transmission. Log-in information will be sent to all Zoom registrants. Visit clarkart.edu/events for more information and to register.

This talk is presented in conjunction with the exhibition Claude and François-Xavier Lalanne: Nature Transformed, on view through October 31 in the Clark’s Michael Conforti Pavilion and additional outdoor installations. In her works, Claude Lalanne (1924–2019) transformed familiar plants and animals into lyrical and sometimes surreal creations while her husband, 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. Nature Transformed features objects by each artist from across their long careers, revealing the power of their artistic imagination, their impressive command of technique, and their enduring visual appeal.

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 this exhibition 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, Robert D. Kraus, and Furthermore: a program of the J.M. Kaplan Fund.

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 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 clarkart.edu or call 413 458 2303.

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