Clark Art Institute

Clark Art Institute, Visitor Center, Location: Williamstown MA, Architect: Tadao Ando
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Renewal and enhancement of the Clark Art Institute’s 140-acre campus, achieved through a decade-long collaboration with Tadao Ando, Annabelle Selldorf, and Gensler, establishes a regional commons for the Berkshires, where art and nature meets daily life.

Rugged, pastoral, and beloved—the Clark’s 140-acre campus of meadows, lawns, forest, ponds, and streams have gained devoted constituencies. Not only has the site been popular, the lands have historically functioned as Williamstown’s timber lot and as a prominent social destination for Williams College students.

In 2001, director Michael Conforti selected Tadao Ando to conceptualize an ambitious expansion for the Institute. Shortly thereafter, Reed Hilderbrand joined as the landscape architect. Better access to and more meaningful stewardship of the campus was viewed as an essential complement to a museum whose collection focused intensively on art’s (and artists’) relationship to nature. Working with The Clark’s stakeholders and a large design team, we developed a vision for this considerable landholding.

Lunder Center at the summit of Stone Hill, completed in 2008, is home to galleries and the prestigious Williamstown Art Conservation Center. Reed Hilderbrand’s work in Phase 1 developed circulation, arrival, and parking to unite the existing campus to Stone Hill Center. Visitors travel through an extensive path network over the expanded campus that incorporates terraces, grassland passages, restored woodland edges, and distant views.

Phase 2 debuted in the summer 2014 with the opening of Ando’s new Clark Visitor Exhibition and Conference Center and the Museum Building, renovated by Annabelle Selldorf. The Clark Center appears embedded in the rising landform at the base of Stone Hill. The Center adjoins the Museum via a terrace that frames a one-acre tiered reflecting pool. The pool is more than a lens to frame views of the landscape from below, though, it’s the center of a storm water management system relating the water feature to the performance of the entire campus landscape.


Williamstown, MA




140 acres




  • “A Triumph of Serenity” by William Morgan, Design New England , September/October 2014
  • Merit Award for Design, Boston Society of Landscape Architects
  • “After Extensive Renovations, a Transformed Clark,” by Sebastian Smee, The Boston Globe , May 18, 2014
  • “A Place of Serene Excitement, Inside and Out,” by Roberta Smith, The New York Times , July 11, 2014
  • “Reflected Glory,” The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Journal , August 2014
  • “From Divergence, a Thoughtful Calm,” by Ted Loos, The New York Times , March 30, 2014
  • “New England Pastoral,” by Gary R. Hilderbrand, Clark Art Institute Journal , Vol. 4, 2003
  • “A Plan for the Future,” Clark Art Institute Journal , Vol. 4, 2003
  • “At One With Nature: Transformed Clark Museum Meshes With Rural Landscape,” Robert Campbell, The Boston Globe , June 29, 2014
  • “American Pastoral, Reinterpreting a Classic Country Aesthetic for Today’s Living,” by Annette Tapert, Waccabuc Residence, Waccabuc, NY, Architectural Digest , June 1998
  • ART IN NATURE Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute Williamstown, MA in collaboration with architects Tadao Ando and Gensler March 15 – September 7, 2003
  • LINE MOVEMENT PASSAGE Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art North Adams, Massachusetts with installations by Tadao Ando Photography by Alan Ward March 15 – May 26, 2003
  • “This Tadao Ando Project Is a Berkshires Rental,” by Lee Rosenbaum, The Wall Street Journal Online , July 9, 2008
  • “Minimalism in the Mountains, A Prize-Winning Architect Adds To a Museum in the Bershires,” by Kelly Crow, The Wall Street Journal , June 20, 2008
  • “Japan’s Ando Sets Pristine Clark Art Wing in Sublime Landscape,” by James S. Russell, , June 19, 2008
  • “Clark Art Institute Expands,” by Kate Taylor, The New York Sun , June 19, 2008
  • “Visitor Center, The Clark Art Institute” by Wendy Moonan, Architectural Record , August 2014
  • Section D, Monocle , July 15 (online only)
  • “Shadow Works: Transforming a Vision into Physical Space at the Clark Art Museum” — Beka Sturges, The Ecological Landscape Alliance Conference, March 2017
  • Best Landscape, The Architect’s Newspaper Best of Design Awards, 2015
  • Honor Award, Boston Society of Landscape, 2015
  • “Gary Hilderbrand at the Clark,” by Elizabeth Barlow Rogers, View , Library of American Landscape History, Number 15, Summer 2015
  • Journal of the Clark Institute , Special Edition: Art in Nature, 2006
  • “In Detail> Clark Art Institute Water System,” by Aaron Seward The Architect’s Newspaper Online , October 20, 2014
  • “Tadao Ando’s Elegant Simplicity,” by Richard Lacayo, Time Magazine , June 19, 2008
  • “Romancing the Stone,” by Amanda Gordon, The New York Sun , June 23, 2008
  • “Soft and Poetic: Whisperlike Brushstrokes on Canvas,” by Ken Johnson, The New York Times , June 20, 2008
  • “An Art Center Worth the Climb,” by Robert Campbell, The Boston Globe , June 22, 2008
  • “Tadao Ando Comes to the Clark,” by Richard Lacayo, Time Magazine , June 20, 2008
  • “Director’s Letter” by Thomas J. Branchick, Art Conservator , Fall 2007
  • “A Museum for Shelter for Art— and Snowshoers,” by Jane Roy Brown, Boston Sunday Globe , November 15, 2009
  • “Crit: Hanger No Starch,” by Jeff Byles, The Architect’s Newspaper , July 9, 2008
  • “An Inspiring Debut,” by Jennifer Huberdeau, North Adams Transcript , June 21-22, 2008
  • “School of Thought,” by Melissa Feldman, Cultured , April/May 2015
  • “Concrete Poetry,” Interview of Tadao Ando by Spencer Bailey, Surface , February 2015
  • “A Small-Town Paean to Fine Art,” by Necee Regis, American Way , April 2015
  • “Clark’s New Spark,” by Alan G. Brake, The East Architect’s Newspaper , November 2, 2011
  • Opening Announcement of The Clark, The New York Times , March 20, 2014
  • “After Extensive Renovations, a Transformed Clark,” by Sebastian Smee, Boston Sunday Globe , May 18, 2014
  • “Into the Woods,” by Tresca Weinstein, Berkshire Living , July 2008
  • “Sense and Sensitivity,” by Julie V. Iovine, The Wall Street Journal , December 26, 2014
  • “The Vanguard of Museum Design,” by Ellen Gamerman, The Wall Street Journal , October 3, 2014
  • “Striving for Grand-Scale Intimacy,” by Lee Rosenbaum, The Wall Street Journal , July 9, 2014
  • “What Museums can Learn from Architect Tadao Ando’s Clark Expansion,” by Carolina A. Miranda, Los Angeles Times , October 7, 2014
  • “Clark Art Institute: Going BIg in the Berkshires,” by Hilarie M. Sheets, ArtNews , July 3, 2014
  • “Glass and Concrete, Water and Art,” by Edwin Heathcote, Financial Times , September 9, 2014
  • “How Green is my Berkshires Valley,” by Julia Halperin, The Art Newspaper , July/August 2014
  • “Grand Designs,” by Louise Nicholson, Apollo , July/August 2014
  • “Deconstruction: The Clark Art Center by Tadao Ando,” by Jane Roy Brown, ArchiExpo , October 2014
  • “A Classic Remastered,” by Wendy Moonan, Architectural Record , August 2014
  • “A Transformed Clark Institute from Tadao Ando and Annabelle Selldorf,” by Tom McKeough, Architectural Digest , July 1, 2014
  • “Architecture Review: The Clark Reflects Changes in Museums,” by Mark Lamster, The Dallas Morning News , September 9, 2014
  • “Mass Appeal,” by Raul Barreneche, Travel and Leisure , July 2014
  • “A Grander Canvas,” ELLE Decor , August 2014
  • “Order Emerges from Chaos in Clark’s Ando Addition,” by James McCown, Art New England , September/October 2014
  • “Discovery Channels,” by Christina Ohly Evans, Town & Country , May 2014
  • “Tadao Ando at the Clark — More then Meets the Eye in Williamstown,” by David D’Arcy, The Art Fuse , July 22, 2014
  • “The New Clark,” by Karen Wilkin, The New Criterion , September 2014
  • “Small Museum Goes Big-Time After Renovation,” by Rick Brettell, The Dallas Morning News , June 28, 2014
  • “Big Changes Debut at The Clark,” by Judith Tolnick Champa, Art New England , May/June 2014
  • “Call and Response, Reed Hilderbrand’s Long Game in the Berkshires Pays Off,” by Jennifer Reut, Landscape Architecture Magazine , December 2017
  • Honor Award for Design, American Society of Landscape Architects, 2015
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