Exhibition: 26 JUL – 26 NOV 2017
Boston,100 Northern Avenue
25 Harbor Shore Drive, Boston, MA 02210, USA




Dana Schutz is a concise exhibition of the artist’s recent work. One of the most prominent painters of her generation, the New York–based Schutz (b. 1976, Livonia, Michigan) is known for her distinctive visual style characterized by vibrant color and tactile brushwork. Her large-scale paintings capture imaginary stories, hypothetical situations, and impossible physical feats, such as swimming while smoking and crying. Schutz’s paintings combine abstraction and figuration with expressive imagination, fragmented bodies, banal objects, and quotidian scenes to create oddly compelling and intriguing pictures.






Over the last decade, she has honed her approach to painting, creating tightly structured scenarios and compressed interiors. Her works capture subjects who seem to be actively managing, even fighting, the limitations of their depicted environments—boundaries set by the canvases’ actual borders. Many of her paintings, such as Getting Dressed All at Once (2012) and Shaving (2010), depict distorted bodies, revealing a nuanced exploration of the female body engaged in life’s everyday rituals.

Drawing on the legacies of both figurative and abstract painting, with nods to touchstone figures such as George Grosz and Max Beckmann, Schutz’s unique voice in painting exemplifies the expansive possibilities of the medium today. In her work, the artist explores what can occur within parameters of space and time and how finite zones can unfold into curious and evocative narratives.

Over the course of her twenty-year career, Dana Schutz’s work has been the subject of multiple museum exhibitions both nationally and internationally, including most recently a survey at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, Canada, and an exhibition of new works at the Kestnergesellschaft, Hanover, Germany. This year she was included in the Whitney Biennial, where one of her paintings ignited a vigorous debate around the role of art, artists, and institutions in the representation of race, a conversation that resonates with larger issues in our current political and cultural landscape. The ICA believes that art has the potential to illuminate aspects of our humanity, expose fault lines in the culture, engage experiences both personal and universal, and inspire inquiry and understanding. We invite you to explore Dana Schutz in the galleries and to learn more about the artist’s work and process.




Dana Schutz Swimming-Smoking-Crying  1000×931
Two years ago, we invited Dana Schutz for an exhibition; she is one of the leading painters of her generation, and we wanted to share the exuberance, skill, and vibrancy of her work with Boston audiences. This past March when her painting Open Casket was shown at the Whitney Biennial, there were a range of responses, including many who felt that the painting embodied privilege and had caused them pain. Art often exposes the fault lines in our culture, and Open Casket raised difficult questions about cultural appropriation, race, and representation. Though Open Casket is not in the ICA exhibition, we welcome the opportunity for debate and reflection on the issues of representation and responsibility, sympathy and empathy, art and social justice. Complex, challenging, sensitive, and urgent, these are issues deserving of thoughtful discourse, and museums are one of the few places where the artist’s voice is central to the conversation. We have designed our programs – panels, lectures, gallery talks, as well as exhibitions and performances – to offer a broad range of artistic voices and a creative space for experimentation, and we look forward to audiences having the opportunity to see for themselves the range of Schutz’s art and engaging in the art and issues of our time.
Jill Medvedow
Ellen Matilda Poss Director






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