Photo courtesy of the Connecticut Historical Society, Hartford, Connecticut.
Williams College graduate student Rebecca R. (Ruthie) Dibble has been conserving for the past year a Connecticut tavern sign from the collection of the Connecticut Historical Society. Her Lenett Fellow project culminates with the free lecture “Conserving the Abel Lewis Tavern Sign” on Wednesday, May 6, at 5:30 pm, in Hunter Studio at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute’s Stone Hill Center. Seating is limited.
As the Lenett Fellow for the 2008-09 year, Dibble sought to work with an
early American painted object that would allow her to explore American
material and visual culture. The Bristol, Connecticut, tin plate tavern
sign, about 1800, was acquired by the Connecticut Historical Society in
2006. Both sides of the sign contain the words “A. Lewis Inn,” the name
of the tavern owner. One side has the eagle of the United States seal.
The other side of the sign contains the Connecticut State seal, a punch
bowl, two glasses, and a decanter. Both the painted surface and the
metal required conservation, completed by Dibble with the guidance of
staff from the Williamstown Art Conservation Center, located in Stone
Hill Center at the Clark.
Dibble is the 2009 Lenett Fellow in the Williams Graduate Program in the
History of Art. The Judith M. Lenett Memorial Fund was established by
the family and friends of the late Ms. Lenett, a candidate for the M.A.
degree, class of 1983, to provide lectures and seminars in American art
and its conservation. Students with an interest in American art and art
conservation enrolled in the graduate program may apply for the
fellowship at the end of their first year. The student selected as the
Lenett Fellow works with the staff of WACC during his/her second year in
the program, culminating in a public lecture in the spring. The Williams
College Graduate Program in the History of Art, the Clark, and WACC
jointly administer the Lenett Fellowship.
The Clark is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown. The galleries
are open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm (daily in July and
August). Admission is free November 1 through May 31. Admission June 1
through October 31 is $12.50 for adults, free for children 18 and
younger, members, and students with valid ID. For more information,
call 413-458-2303 or visit www.clarkart.edu.