Institute for Contemporary Art

Institute for Contemporary Art in Boston, Massachusetts by Diller Scofidio + Renfro, 2002

The following text and images are by The Institute of Contemporary Art the for their New Waterfront Museum by New York's Diller + Scofidio (now Diller Scofidio + Renfro) in Boston, Massachusetts.

On September 4, 2002, the Trustees of The Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, unveiled Diller + Scofidio's highly anticipated design for a new 62,000-square-foot, four-story museum to provide both a world-class exhibition space to showcase works by leading contemporary artists and a vibrant center for public performances, educational activities, and waterfront access.

Diller + Scofidio's dramatic cantilever design integrates the public harborwalk into the building and produces shifting views of the waterfront throughout the museum, which will include 18,000 square feet of exhibition space; a 300-seat performing arts theater; a media center; educational facilities; and a bookstore and restaurant.

The galleries, located on the uppermost level, dramatically cantilever over the city's public harborwalk toward the water, providing a sheltered open space at ground level where visitors can gather to enjoy views of the Boston Harbor. The exterior of the "gallery box," clad in translucent glass planks, will be illuminated at night to become a radiant, welcoming waterfront presence. Inside the museum, the harbor view is transformed into a theatrical backdrop for the theater's stage, whose glass walls can be adjusted for light--from transparent to filtered to opaque--to meet particular performance needs.

Completion of the museum, which will be Diller + Scofidio's first major new building project in the United States, is projected for spring 2006. A $60 million capital campaign is underway to support building and endowing the facility.