Institute of Contemporary Art

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Institute of Contemporary Art “How do you make a building for contemporary art that stays contemporary in the future without stooping to a neutral language? And how do you attract a big public without compromising the selfish, private, exclusive time we all want to have in a museum?” These questions, put forward by Elizabeth Diller of Diller Scofidio + Renfro, represent the urbanistic motivation supporting the construction of Boston’s Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA). In such a manner Boston’s ICA engages, not only with the urban citizen, but also the urban landscape in which the site is located. The ICA conveys the idea of architecture as art in itself. As a presenter of art to the urban citizen and because of its open design, the inside allows the citizens to not only appreciate the art within the building but also see the art of the building’s natural environment and setting. Boston’s ICA situated at Fan Pier in South Boston represents a shift from preconceived architectural constructs to more innovative forms. The building’s position in the middle of a currently undeveloped urban landscape gives it a striking entity that engages the viewer in a way that facilitates its various functions as a contemporary art museum. Furthermore its structure and location alter the population’s understanding of museum architecture as it has traditionally been defined, that it is a “shell” that contains significant artistic work. A visual paradox becomes evident between
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