Founded in 1963, the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) at the University of Pennsylvania has developed an international reputation as a preeminent venue for contemporary art and culture. ICA is widely known for exhibiting artists at critical points in their careers. It organized the first museum shows on the work of Andy Warhol, Laurie Anderson, Robert Indiana, and Agnes Martin. A non-collecting museum, ICA is also one of the only kunsthalles in America.
A beneficiary of Bauhaus-inspired teaching and a respected photographer, Chicago-based artist Barbara Kasten has exerted a profound influence on a younger generation of artists working in Philadelphia, Los Angeles, New York, and elsewhere. This exhibition, the first major survey of Kasten's work, broadly situates her legacy in relationship to contemporary art, beyond a strictly photographic history. In addition to including her stage designs and installations, the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) commissioned Kasten to create a new, large-scale video and light sculpture for its gallery. A citywide, semester-long colloquium for Philadelphia college students addressed an array of issues related to the exhibition, such as: Who gets to be a contemporary artist? Barbara Kasten: Stages has culminated in a full-color catalog from JRP|Ringier, in collaboration with the ICA. Following a successful run in Philadelphia, the exhibition toured to the Graham Foundation as part of the 2015 Chicago Architecture Biennial in October 2015, and will travel to the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles in Spring 2016.
The ICA received a 2013 Discovery Grant for the planning of Barbara Kasten: Stages.
*Additional unrestricted funds are added to each grant for general operating support.*