International Initiatives

Organized in collaboration with partners from the Institute of Art History at the Estonian Academy of Arts.These international initiatives were made possible by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support events that foster a fresh, global vision of the discipline of art history and embrace geographic, cultural, and disciplinary diversity.


2011 – 2014 The Trade Routes of Art History

“Trade Routes” is a research initiative supported by a three-year grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. This initiative was conceptualized around waterways and maritime routes in order to investigate different modes of art and architectural production, reception, and dissemination in regions connected through the Indian Ocean.

2009 – 2011 Unfolding Narratives: Art Histories in East-Central Europe after 1989

The Clark’s Research and Academic Program, together with regional partners, organized this series of three travelling seminars in 2010 and 2011. The seminars were linked thematically as well as by the presence of a core group of participants. The discussion in each location, however, was influenced primarily by the particular intellectual, cultural, and political interests and issues of the specific region and its audiences. Discussions revolved around the extraordinary intellectual energies and innovations that mark the best of the East-Central European intellectual life and sought to continue the facilitation of open dialogue and contact between those working in the US and Western Europe with those in East-Central Europe. This intiative came to Williamstown in 2011, for a two-day workshop to continue the discussion. Additional support for this workshop series was provided by the Getty Foundation.

2007 – 2008 Contemporary African Art: History, Theory, and Practice 

This workshop was organized by the Research and Academic Program of the Clark and the Wits School of the Arts at the University of Witwatersrand (WITS) in Johannesburg, South Africa. This project, undertaken with the generous support of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, examined more than forty years of art historical scholarship about modern and contemporary African art. The two components of the workshop, international gatherings of distinguished scholars and artists, took place in 2007 and 2008. The initial phase of the workshop was held at WITS (October 25–28, 2007), and the second phase at the Clark in Williamstown, Massachusetts (May 22–25, 2008). This was followed by a Getty-funded residency for African participants in Williamstown and New York City from May 25–30, 2008.

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