News Release

Five Contemporary Artists Reimagine Everyday Objects through Sculpture and Installation at ICA this Fall

July 31, 2023
Philadelphia, PA

This fall, the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania (ICA) presents the group exhibition Moveables, which investigates the ways in which the designed environment has the capacity to condition experience, and how artworks can propose new models of “functionality.” Moveables brings together the sculptural works of five contemporary artists—Jes Fan, Nikita Gale, Hannah Levy, Ken Lum, and Oren Pinhassi—who rethink the forms of functional design and its intimate relationship to bodies through their multidisciplinary practices. Moveables opens at ICA on August 18, 2023, with an artist reception on September 8, and will remain on view through December 17, 2023.

Movables is a prescient thematic exhibition that platforms new and recent work by five distinct artistic voices who are each grappling with the frameworks of our lived environment across media and scales,” said Zoë Ryan, Daniel W. Dietrich, II Director. “It is gratifying to be working with two guest curators on the exhibition—Alex Klein, former ICA senior curator and currently Head Curator and Director of Curatorial Affairs, The Contemporary Austin, and Cole Akers, Curator and Associate Director of Special Projects, The Glass House —whose visions for this exhibition further our mission and program as a launchpad for innovative artistic experimentation.”

The word “moveables” refers to any article in a building, such as furniture, that is not fixed in place. While originally developed as a legal term to describe property, the word also implies motion and fluidity. The artworks on view—whether they take the form of a sectional sofa, a toothbrush holder, or a chandelier—probe the tension between public and private, real and imaginary, and invite viewers to consider new possibilities for the objects that shape our daily lives. Moveables is part of a lineage of ICA exhibitions—from Improbable Furniture (1977) to Ruffneck Constructivists(2014)—that challenge histories of modernist design to center questions of queer desire, race, class, gender, and ability through a reconsideration of the constructed world around us.

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