Free Lecture at the Clark Examines Winslow Homer's Unlikely French Influences

For Immediate Release

August 13, 2013

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA—Erica Hirshler, the Croll Senior Curator of American Paintings for the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, delivers the free lecture “North Atlantic Drift: Winslow Homer and French Painting” at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute on Sunday, August 25 at 3 pm. Hirshler discusses Winslow Homer’s works in the context of nineteenth-century America’s taste for French art and a simultaneous desire for a style of art that could truly be called “American.”

Hirshler argues that while Homer is often cast as a fiercely individual painter who developed his own style, he was measurably influenced by the European art community, particularly painters of the French Barbizon School, including Camille Corot and Jean-François Millet.

Hirshler received her Ph.D from Boston University and has published a variety of work on the relationship between European and American art. Most recently, she published “North Atlantic Drift: A Meditation on Winslow Homer and French Painting” in Weatherbeaten: Winslow Homer and Maine (2012), a publication that accompanied an exhibition at the Portland Museum of Art in Portland, Maine, and an article entitled “Transatlantic Passages,” in A New World Imagined: Art of the Americas (2010).

About the Clark

Set amidst 140 acres in the Berkshires, the Clark is one of the few major art museums that also serves as a leading international center for research and scholarship. The Clark presents public and education programs and organizes groundbreaking exhibitions that advance new scholarship. The Clark’s research and academic programs include an international fellowship program and conferences. Together with Williams College, the Clark sponsors one of the nation’s leading master’s programs in art history. The Clark receives support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.

The Clark is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, Massachusetts. The galleries are open daily in July and August (open Tuesday through Sunday from September through June), 10 am to 5 pm. Admission is $15 June 1 through October 31; free November through May; and free year-round for Clark members, children 18 and younger, and students with valid ID. For more information, or call 413 458 2303. The Clark’s library is closed for renovation through September 3, 2013.


Sally Majewski
[email protected]

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