Clark Expansion Program Moves into Final Stage

For Immediate Release

March 20, 2014

Galleries will close beginning March 24 to prepare for summer exhibitions

Williamstown, Massachusetts—The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute’s expansion program has moved into its final phase as preparations begin for the opening of its new campus. To facilitate completion of the project and installation of both its permanent collection and the works on view in its summer 2014 exhibitions, the Clark’s galleries will close at 5 pm on March 23 and reopen on July 4. The Clark’s library remains open and its auditorium will continue to host a limited schedule of public programs throughout the early spring.

At the July 4 opening, the Clark will present special exhibitions in the new Visitor Center and at Stone Hill Center, both buildings designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Tadao Ando, Osaka, Japan. The Museum Building will open with a new installation of works from the Clark’s permanent collection in renovated and expanded galleries designed by New York-based Selldorf Architects.

“We are entering the most intense and exciting phase of our campus expansion program,” said Clark Director Michael Conforti. “It’s necessary to close the galleries temporarily in order to begin the complex process of readying multiple exhibition spaces. During the next few months we will be focused on preparing our buildings and grounds for our opening. We look forward to welcoming our friends and neighbors to the new Clark on July 4.”

The new Visitor Center adds 11,000 square feet of gallery space and will open with two special exhibitions, Make It New: Abstract Painting from the National Gallery of Art, 1950–1975  and Cast for Eternity: Ancient Ritual Bronzes from the Shanghai Museum. The Stone Hill Center galleries will feature Raw Color: The Circles of David Smith.

Gallery space in the renovated Museum Building has been expanded by 15 percent, as a careful reconfiguration of former back-of-house areas adds some 2200 square feet for an expanded presentation of the Clark’s permanent collection.

Inaugural Special Exhibitions

The special exhibitions opening on July 4 are:

Make It New: Abstract Painting from the National Gallery of Art, 1950–1975

Ando’s modernist Visitor Center galleries host an exhibition that examines the different paths taken by abstract painting in the immediate postwar period. Drawn largely from the National Gallery of Art’s exceptional collection, Make It New features some of the greatest works of mid-century abstract art: Jackson Pollock’s iconic painting Number 1, 1950 (Lavender Mist), along with key paintings by Mark Rothko, Barnett Newman, Jean Dubuffet, Cy Twombly, Helen Frankenthaler, Jasper Johns, and Yayoi Kusama. Ranging from experiments with color and geometry to works in cloth, wax, and other materials, the exhibition looks at the ways in which artists continued to expand the definition of painting during this time. Make It New is organized by the National Gallery of Art, Washington, in collaboration with the Clark, and is curated by Harry Cooper, Curator of Modern Art, National Gallery of Art with David Breslin, Associate Director of the Clark’s Research and Academic Program and Associate Curator of Contemporary Projects.

Cast for Eternity: Ancient Ritual Bronzes from the Shanghai Museum

On view in the West Pavilion gallery of the Visitor Center, Cast for Eternity presents some of the finest surviving examples of early bronze work from the Shanghai Museum’s exceptional collection. These rare bronze works, dating from the late Xia Dynasty through the Western Han dynasties (c. 1800 bce–c. 8 ce), represent the finest quality craftsmanship and artistic accomplishment from China’s Bronze Age. This exhibition continues the Clark’s partnership with China’s Ministry of Culture and a number of Chinese cultural institutions that was originally inspired by the centennial commemoration of Sterling Clark’s early scientific expedition to northern China. The curatorial team, led by Tom Loughman, Associate Director of the Clark, includes representatives from the Clark and the Shanghai Museum. The exhibition is designed by Selldorf Architects.

Raw Color: The Circles of David Smith

Installed in the intimately scaled galleries and surrounding outdoor spaces of the Clark’s Stone Hill Center, Raw Color: The Circles of David Smith presents a selection of works by one of the most celebrated sculptors of the twentieth century. The exhibition marks the first time in more than thirty years that all five of the key sculptures from Smith’s Circle series (1962–63) are shown together. Its presentation on the Clark’s Berkshires campus creates a setting that is similar to (and less than one hundred miles away from) Smith’s Bolton Landing, New York home where the artist created and installed them. This exhibition is curated by David Breslin, Associate Director of the Clark’s Research and Academic Program and Associate Curator of Contemporary Projects.

About the Clark

The Clark is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, Massachusetts. The galleries are open 10 am to 5 pm daily from July 4 through October 13, 2014, and open until 7 pm on Friday evenings in July and August. (Open Tuesday through Sunday from October 14, 2014 through June 1, 2015.) Admission is $20 July 4 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, visit or call 413 458 2303.


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