Director’s Message – April 19, 2024

Dear Friends,Extraordinary. It’s not something you see everyday.

I am overjoyed to share that we have teamed up with a devoted partner to bring you just that.

Last night, Bank of America announced 24 projects around the globe selected to be part their 2024 Art Conservation Project. It is a stellar list: Musée d’Orsay, National Gallery in London, the Guggenheim, Smithsonian, and…Hill-Stead, sandwiched between Rome’s Galleria Borghese and the Louvre!

The Louvre Pyramid, Paris. Photograph by Anders Bengtsson.

With the Bank’s support, in July we will host two titans of art conservation, David Bull and Teresa Longyear, who will treat three of our Impressionist masterpieces, Degas’s Dancers in Pink, Manet’s Toreadors and Monet’s Fishing Boats at Sea.

Fishing Boats at Sea, Claude Monet

They will set up shop in our bespoke glass room, named for our longtime supporter David Dangremond and his sons Sam and Gus. In this conservation “fishbowl” they shall – right before your eyes – remove 125+ years worth of dirt, grime and discoloration. And at the end, we will all have the chance to see these artworks anew, in their original vibrant states, as perhaps only the artists themselves did. Until now.

I imagine it will feel like having cataracts removed from your eyes. Do carve out a day between July 10th and 31st to come see for yourself.

The honor of being selected and the gratitude we feel for our inimitable partner is beyond what I can describe. However, I would like to highlight the singular and crucial role that Bank of America occupies here. As the successor bank entrusted with the funds Theodate left to care for Hill-Stead, it provides the one unbroken chain of this museum’s life, from 1947 to today. Supporting the hard, worthy work of preserving and sharing this wondrous place, they are a beacon of commitment, faithfulness, and devotion.

We are both humbled and elated!


Dr. Anna Swinbourne
Executive Director & CEO

P.S: if you are curious about the other 23 art projects, you can learn about them here.