Local Tourist – #1 – ICA/Boston

“The learned is happy, nature to explore; The fool is happy, that he knows no more.” ~Alexander Pope

Throughout one’s life, the treasures and places that lie close to our own home often prove just as important as exotic items and destinations on the other side of the world.

Enter Boston’s Institute of Contemporary Art:  It’s nearby, the building and landscape are stunning, and you could probably use a little more art in your life (that framed poster on your bedroom wall you’ve had since college doesn’t count).

The art is savvy, topical, provocative, and shown at some of the most famous museums around the world (the MET, Guggenheim, Tate Modern…).  There are very few paintings hanging on the wall to blankly stare at.  Most pieces are meant to be seen from many angles, almost inviting you to interact with it.  The works and their explanations are approachable while still giving you information that is thoughtful and atypical.  A few examples…

Issac Julien’s “Ten-Thousand Waves”

Josiah Mcelheny’s “Czech Modernism Mirrored Reflected Infinitely”

A piece from Jenny Holzer’s “Selections from Survival”

Take a few hours one day and get lost on any of the four floors.  Better yet, play hookie from half a day of work and head over (avoiding crowds will prove worthwhile).  Besides the art, there is a cafe and an interactive media room which shows the details that go into producing some of the pieces on display.  Also, thanks to the recent revival of the Seaport District, there are a TON of restaurants/bars in the area if you’re famished after your visit (Sam’s at Louis Boston, Sportello, Legal Seafoods Harborside; SushiTeq @ the Intercontinental… I could go on for awhile).

The ICA is the perfect introduction to becoming a local tourist.  Step out your back door… and pay attention… it’s that simple…

Address: 100 Northern Ave, Boston, MA

Phone number: 617.478.3100

Hours: Tues & Wed 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Thurs & Fri 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. (free on Thursdays from 5-9 p.m.!); Sat & Sun 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. 

Admission: General- $15; Senior- $13; Student- $10

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