Collecting 19th-Century Art in the 21st Century

For Immediate Release

July 20, 2004

A distinguished group of speakers will discuss "Collecting 19th-Century Art in the 21st Century" at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute on Saturday, July 31, at 2 p.m. The Clark's consultative curator of 19th-century French paintings, Richard Kendall, will moderate the roundtable discussion with noted art historian Richard Brettell, Nicholas Maclean of Christie's, New York, and Althea Viafora-Kress of Viafora-Kress Fine Art. The program is offered in connection with the summer exhibition "Bonjour, Monsieur Courbet!": The Bruyas Collection from the Musée Fabre, Montpellier. Admission to the roundtable discussion is free.

Richard Brettell is professor of aesthetic studies at the University of Texas at Dallas and director of FRAME (French Regional and American Museum Exchange), under the auspices of which the current exhibition was organized. Nicholas Maclean is vice president and head of 19th-century paintings at Christie's, New York. Maclean has made numerous appearances on PBS's "Antiques Roadshow." Althea Viafora-Kress is owner of the Althea Viafora-Kress Gallery in New York City, and host of "The Collector's Forum" on the internet radio station, WPS1, where she has interviewed notable collectors, dealers, and scholars.

"Bonjour, Monsieur Courbet!" is on view June 27 through September 6. The show features masterpieces by Gustave Courbet, Eugène Delacroix, Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres, Camille Corot, Jean-Léon Gérôme, Alexandre Cabanel, and others. The show highlights some of the most influential images of 19th-century French painting, including the famous title painting by Courbet. The 45 paintings, 20 drawings, and five sculptures, many of which have rarely been seen in the United States, are all drawn from the collection of Alfred Bruyas (1821-1876). Bruyas was one of the foremost collectors of art of his day in France.

The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, Massachusetts.  The galleries are open daily 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Gallery admission is $10 (members, students, and 18 and under free). For more information call 413-458-2303 or visit www.clarkart.edu/exhibitions/bruyas.

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