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The Lookout: Visual Arts
June 5, 2005

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''Places of the Spirit: Sacred Sites of the Adirondacks": In 2001, the Lake Placid Institute for the Arts and Humanities commissioned a small group of photographers to create images of churches, synagogues, and other spiritual places in this region. An example: Barry Lobdell's romantic ''Tea House, White Pine Camp, Paul Smiths," a twilight view of a lake with a curved bridge linking the mainland to a Japanese-style teahouse on a tiny island. At the Boston Athenaeum, June 17-Sept. 2. 617-227-0270; www.bostonathenaeum.org.

''Jacques-Louis David: Empire to Exile": Amazingly, this is the first US exhibition to focus exclusively on the work of one of the most celebrated painters of his day -- and a man who rolled with the political tides of tumultuous times in French history. David became Napoleon's official painter and then, after the emperor's fall, finished his career in exile in Brussels. At the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, June 5-Sept. 5. 413-458-2303; www.clarkart.edu.

''The Kingdom of Siam: The Art of Central Thailand, 1350-1800": Forget the stereotype of ''The King and I" and visit this show of Siamese antiquities, including long-hidden treasures, a 14th-century gold Buddha among them. At the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, July 16-Oct. 16. 978-745-9500; www.pem.org.

''Rozome Masters of Japan": The 2,500-year-old resist-dyeing technique known in other countries as batik is called ''rozome" in Japan. Traditionally used in kimono fabrics, rozome has been liberated by the 15 masters in the field whose work comes to Mass Art in this exhibition, a centerpiece of the World Batik Conference Boston 2005, headquartered at the college. At the Paine Gallery of the Massachusetts College of Art, June 10-Sept. 21. 617-879-7333; www.massart.edu.

''Ansel Adams": No photographer has made such beloved images of a pristine American landscape than Ansel Adams. The slim, glowing Aspen trees he captured in the 1950s have a transcendental quality. Barely connected to the earth, they seem to aim for the heavens. Still-lifes and portraits are among the other works in this comprehensive survey. At the Museum of Fine Arts, Aug. 21-Dec. 31. 617-267-9300; www.mfa.org. CHRISTINE TEMIN

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