ICA Artists in-Residence at Boston National Historical Park

ICA Artists-in-Residence at Boston National Historical Park is a joint initiative between the Institute of Contemporary Art and the National Park Service that provides a living interpretation of the Park's cultural resources and historical themes through the work of artists. This program is an extension of Vita Brevis's mission of presenting compelling art outside the walls of the ICA.

Boston National Historical Park is a collection of historic sites owned by the City of Boston, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Federal government, and several private organizations. Its mission is to preserve, interpret, and protect those historic structures and properties of outstanding national significance located in Boston.


Boston artists Laura Baring-Gould and Michael Dowling collaborated to create an ambitious new multi-part work, Conspire, which examined and celebrated the power of five of Boston's most important historic sites and the key roles each played in the founding and growth of the United States. Drawing on the rich histories of the African Meeting House, Old South Meeting House, Paul Revere House, and Copp's Hill Burying Ground as significant places of assembly and shelter, the artists created small house-shaped sculptures of copper, silver, slate, and alabaster especially for each site. These sculptures led to a water-borne copper meetinghouse docked at the Charlestown Navy Yard that was designed and constructed by the artists.

During their residency, Baring-Gould and Dowling became interested in Boston's significant historical structures where our 18th- and 19th-century forebears gathered to gain political strength, to teach, to live, to worship, to mourn, and to remember. Each of the sites chosen for their project witnessed remarkable events related to ideals that have defined this nation—freedom to worship, revolution, abolition, education, and historic preservation.