The Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College

Bard Music Festival

Make a Day of It!

In addition to the Fisher Center, designed by Frank Gehry, Bard College is home to many architectural and artistic treasures. Arrive early to stroll on Bard’s beautiful campus, and take some time to explore:

Bard Campus Attractions

The parliament of reality
Across the street from the Fisher Center is the parliament of reality, a permanent sculptural environment created by the internationally renowned artist Olafur Eliasson. Commissioned by Bard’s Center for Curatorial Studies, the installation consists of a circular pond surrounded by a ring of trees and punctuated by an island that visitors reach via a stone bridge enclosed in a steel latticework tunnel.

Center for Curatorial Studies
and Hessel Museum of Art
The Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College (CCS Bard) is an exhibition, education, and research center dedicated to the study of art and curatorial practices. Designed by architects Jim Goettsch and Nada Andric, CCS Bard houses the Hessel Museum of Art and the Marieluise Hessel Collection of more than 2,000 contemporary works. Museum hours are Thursday through Sunday, 11 am – 6 pm. Free admission.

Blithewood Manor
Blithewood is the home of the Levy Economics Institute of Bard College. Both the mansion, built in 1900, and its site were originally designed by the celebrated landscape architect A. J. Downing. Blithewood is famous for its Italianate garden and its glorious view of the Hudson River.

The Gabrielle H. Reem and Herbert J. Kayden Center for Science and Computation
This state-of-the-art, 70,000-square-foot science facility houses the Biology, Chemistry, and Computer Science Programs. Designed by Rafael Viñoly Architects, the dramatic two-story building includes nearly 17,000 square feet of dedicated laboratory space.

Stone Row
Stone Row was built in the late 1800s as part of the original St. Stephen’s College, which later became Bard. The oldest part of the Bard campus, Stone Row consists of four adjacent buildings: North Hoffman, South Hoffman, Potter, and McVickar.

Chapel of the Holy Innocents
The chapel was a gift from Mr. and Mrs. John Bard, and dedicated to their son Willie. It was built in 1857 with local oak and with stone from quarries across the Hudson River in Ulster County. The structure was rebuilt in 1859 after the original edifice was destroyed by fire.

Area Attractions

New York City's boundless cultural resources, about 90 miles to the south, are readily accessible by train or car.

Two major contemporary art institutions are in Bard's vicinity. Dia:Beacon, some 30 miles south of campus, houses a renowned collection of art from the 1960s to the present. MASS MoCA, the largest center for contemporary arts in the United States, is in North Adams, Massachusetts, less than a two-hour drive north. Also accessible are Olana, the home of Hudson River school painter Frederic Church; the Thomas Cole Historic Site; Storm King Art Center, an outdoor sculpture museum; the Culinary Institute of America; Staatsburg and the Vanderbilt Mansion, two 19th-century estates; the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum; and the Eleanor Roosevelt Center at Val-Kill.

The area surrounding Bard offers plentiful activities for outdoor enthusiasts. Skiing, horseback riding, rock climbing, hiking, snowboarding, white-water rafting, cycling, mountain biking, ice skating, and canoeing are available. The area is also a center for spiritual life, containing churches of all denominations, temples, mosques, Zen and Tibetan Buddhist monasteries, and meditation centers.


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