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Delight in the Dutch During Free Family Day July 22 at the Clark

For Immediate Release

July 09, 2007

The high energy group Bang on a Can, hands-on art activities, a farm animal petting zoo, an illusion show, family-friendly fare, and fun for all ages, will explore the arts and culture of the Netherlands during Dutch Delights, a free family day on Sunday, July 22 at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. From 11 am to 4 pm, families will discover the heritage, art, and flavor of the Netherlands indoors and on the Clark’s expansive park-like grounds. Dutch Delights is part of NL: A Season of Dutch Arts in the Berkshires, a celebration of the arts and culture of the Netherlands. Berkshire County NL partner venues will participate in the family day. Admission to the galleries and all activities is free on this day.

Live theatrical, magical, and mind-boggling performances will delight all ages. New York-based Bang on a Can, described as “the country’s most important vehicle for contemporary music” by the San Francisco Chronicle, will perform works from their recent engagement at MASS MoCA as part of the NL festivities. Catch them at 11:30 am and 1:30 pm. Enjoy folk dancing and singing by enthusiastic costumed Dutch History Live performers in a variety show of Dutch heritage at 11:30 am and 2 pm. Recordings of recent Jacob’s Pillow and Tanglewood performances will play in the courtyard. And don’t miss the Dutch illusion show Depth of Illusion – Dlept Van Illusie at 12:45 and 3:15 pm in the auditorium.

A variety of hands-on activities will include trying on Dutch costumes, wooden shoes, buckets and yokes. In the art-making tent, craft Delftware tiles and decorate wooden shoes. Dutch heritage demonstrations will take place throughout the day including stipwerk, cookie slate, and spinning. Dutch traditional craft kits will be for sale. Grab art supplies (all provided) and head out for Van Gogh’s Still Life drawing class held on the grounds at the top of each hour (sign up in advance). Need inspiration? Visit Van Gogh’s The Sower (after Millet) and Self Portrait on view in the galleries. A wooden shoes game and Dutch shuffleboard will encourage fun and games all afternoon.

A Dutch chocolate tasting will be led by chocolatier Nick Monte of The Village Chocolate Shoppe in Bennington and The Village Peddler in East Arlington, both located in nearby Vermont. Local restaurants will sell mouth-watering delights including Jae's at the Clark with burgers, dogs, shish kabobs, salads, and fruit kabobs; Helen's Place with crab cakes; Boston Sea Food with fries and mayonnaise (a traditional Dutch treat) and special seafood boats; Hot Tomatoes with pizza; Spice Root offering an Indian buffet; and Lickety Split with ice cream cones.

Dutch masterpieces meet their matches at the Clark this summer during Dutch Dialogues on view through September 3. On display are four iconic works by Vincent van Gogh, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, and Jean-François Millet. In addition, two portraits by Frans Hals are reunited for the first time in two centuries and a work by the contemporary Dutch artist Robert Scholte is juxtaposed with the Clark’s Impressionist paintings.

A visit to the Clark is a rewarding family experience with 140 acres of scenic meadows and hiking trails providing ample opportunities for children to run and play, have a quiet picnic lunch, or spot the many birds inhabiting the area. The Clark’s grounds are open to the public free of charge. Food is available for purchase. Picnic tables and benches dot the property. Free admission to the galleries is always offered to children 18 and under and students with valid ID.

The Clark is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, MA. The galleries are open daily in July and August, 10 am to 5 pm (closed Mondays, September through June). Admission June 1 through October 31 is $12.50 for adults, free for children 18 and under, members, and students with valid ID. Admission is free November through May. For more information, call 413-458-2303 or visit www.clarkart.edu.

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