May 15-17, 2024
The 48th annual meeting of the American Historical Print Collectors Society will take place in Williamstown, Massachusetts.
Williamstown, a charming college town, located in the shadow of Mount Greylock, the highest point in the Berkshire Mountains of northwestern Massachusetts, is home to Williams College and the Clark Art Institute. The surrounding area abounds historic associations and cultural attractions, including the homes and studios of artists Daniel Chester French and Norman Rockwell and authors Hermann Melville, William Cullen Bryant and Edith Wharton. Nathaniel Hawthorne completed The House of the Seven Gables while living in a little red house now located on the grounds of the Tanglewood Music Center, the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Other nearby attractions include Hancock Shaker Village, the Berkshire Atheneum, and the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MassMOCA).
The AHPCS has arranged special tours of several of the region’s outstanding cultural collections for this year’s annual meeting, as well as lining up a program of first-rate speakers.
Rooms at the Williams Inn are available for $259 per night. Please contact the Inn directly at 413-458-9371 or make your reservations online.
Plenty of free parking is available. The inn is located within walking distance of Williams College (.7 miles) and the Clark Art Institute (1 mile). Note that no rooms are available for the night of Saturday May 18th. Those wishing to extend their stay will need to find other accommodations in the area.
The nearest airports are the Albany International Airport (41.9 miles) in Albany, New York, and Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Connecticut (88 miles). No public transportation to Williamstown is available from either airport. Please indicate on your registration form if you will need a ride to and from the airport, or if you will have a car and are willing to carpool to and from the airport. Taxi service from the airports to Williamstown is available, but is very expensive, costing about $110-140.
The deadline to register for the meeting is April 15, 2024.
Wednesday, May 15
Destination: Historic Deerfield
The meeting will begin on Wednesday with a full-day trip to Deerfield, Massachusetts, to visit Historic Deerfield, an outdoor museum that interprets the history and culture of western Massachusetts from the earliest English settlers through the arts and crafts movement. The visit will include special tours of the Flynt Center of New England Life and the Henry N. Flynt Library to view highlights of those collections, a buffet lunch at the Deerfield Inn, and ample time to explore the twelve historic buildings on the site. Members may also choose to visit the Memorial Hall Museum, operated by the Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association.
Transportation: Bus transportation from Williamstown will be provided for those arriving on Tuesday May 14 or early on May 15th; other members may choose to join the group in Deerfield on their way to Williamstown.
Thursday, May 16
Speakers: Georgia Barnhill, Robert Emlen, Michael McCue, and Christina Michelon
Destination: Williams College, Williams College Museum of Art
A continental breakfast will be provided before the morning session at the Williams Inn.
Morning session talks include:
- Georgia Barnhill on illustrated books
- Robert Emlen on prints of the Shakers
- Michael McCue on Louis Harlow
- Christina Michelon on the Great Boston Fire
The session will be followed by a buffet lunch at the Inn. The afternoon will be spent at Williams College, a liberal arts college founded in 1793. While primarily an undergraduate institution, the college offers a graduate program in art history in conjunction with the Clark Art Institute and MassMOCA. The Williams College Museum of Art began collecting in the mid-nineteenth century and is especially well known for its collection of works by Maurice and Charles Prendergast, the largest collection of the Prendergasts’ works in existence. In addition to the WCMA, there will be a curator-led program at the Chapin Library, featuring its extensive collection of Americana, including prints, illustrated books, and ephemera. Back at the Williams Inn, a buffet dinner will be preceded by the Print Mart.
Friday, May 17
Speakers: Allison Stagg, Rebecca Szantyr
Destination: The Clark Art Institute
Friday’s program at the Williams Inn will begin with a continental breakfast, followed by the annual business meeting. Following the meeting:
- Allison Stagg will speak on caricatures
- Rebecca Szantyr will deliver a talk on Atmosphere in Prints, focusing on the collections at the Clark Art Institute
Immediately after Rebecca’s talk, there will be a buffet lunch at the Clark, where the afternoon will be spent in curator-led tours of the exhibition Paper Cities, visits to the Manton Study Center to view a selection of American prints, and tours of the Williamstown Art Conservation Center (WACC).
The Clark Art Institute, which opened to the public in 1955, has expanded greatly through the years, adding to the collections donated by Sterling and Francine Clark, renovating the original museum building and adding the Manton Research Center and two new buildings designed by Tadao Ando, the Clark Center and the Lunder Center at Stone Hill.
Members will want to spent time viewing the works on view in the public galleries, and exploring the Clark campus, with trails leading from the main museum to two additional small galleries on Stone Hill.
That evening, the meeting will culminate with a plated dinner at the Williams Inn, followed by the annual auction to benefit the AHPCS.
Image Credits (from top)
Detail from Lucien Rinaldo Burleigh, Williamstown, Massachusetts. Tinted lithograph, 1889. Courtesy of the Williams College Museum of Art.
Wilson Printing Office, 1816. Historic Deerfield. Courtesy of Historic Deerfield.
Louise Bourgeois, Eyes (2001) in front of the Williams College Museum of Art. Courtesy of the Williams College Museum of Art.
View of the Clark Art Institute from Stone Hill. Courtesy of the Clark Art Institute.