The Institute of Contemporary Art opened its doors in 1936 as an affiliate of New York City’s renowned Museum of Modern Art, aka the MoMa. Thus, the Institute was originally called the Boston Museum of Modern Art. The museum quickly grew in size and recognition, and acquired its current name in 1948 to disassociate with the MoMa and to reflect its innovative take on the world of contemporary art.
With constant strategic planning and forward thinking, the ICA remains one of Boston’s premier destinations for a unique and cutting-edge fine arts experience. In 2016, the institute embraced a five-year mission known as the “Radical Welcome”, aiming to take its focus on diversity, inclusivity, and visitor engagement to an even higher level. With the implementation of more interactive exhibits, events, and opportunities to meet and observe artists in action, visiting the ICA has become a truly immersive experience.
The Institute’s current location in Boston’s up and coming Seaport district opened in 2006, with the completion of its brand-new building. Designed to be a prominent fixture on the historic Fan Pier waterfront, the building’s visionary architectural style is perhaps as unique and cutting-edge as the exhibits it houses.
The museum is open every day of the week except Mondays. Should timing allow, be sure to visit on a Thursday night when admission is free, or perhaps for one of the Institute’s monthly “First Fridays” during which the space is transformed into a gala-like social venue complete with dancing and drinks. Be sure to get your First Friday tickets in advance, as they often sell out.