Visitors of all ages can experiment and create art about Boston Harbor in this immersive laboratory

The Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston (ICA) has invited artist Evelyn Rydz to create an interactive art installation in the museum’s Bank of America Art Lab, opening October 7. Titled Salty > Sour Seas, Rydz’s new project turns the Bank of America Art Lab into an art studio and scientific laboratory where visitors can investigate, experiment, and create work while considering the museum’s unique site on Boston Harbor. Rydz conceived of Salty > Sour Seas to raise awareness about the effects of carbon dioxide on microscopic phytoplankton that live in the earth’s changing oceans and seas. These small but mighty organisms create about half the planet’s oxygen and help feed many animals. Human activities, however, are affecting phytoplankton and the oceanic ecosystem by warming water temperatures and increasing levels of acidification. Using pH test paper, participants can test various liquid acidity levels—including that of Boston Harbor—and see acidity as a changing visual element within their process of investigating and art making.

Salty > Sour Seas will be open on Saturdays and Sundays from 12-4pm, from October 7 through March 11.  The activity is free for all visitors with museum admission.

Meet the Artist on Saturday, October 7 and Saturday, March 10 from 2-4pm
On these dates, visitors can join Rydz for a sour phytoplankton popsicle tasting. The tastings will allow visitors to explore the unexpected sourness of taste and the unwanted souring of seas, creating a common point for questions and conversation on ideas of ocean acidification and the future of ocean ecosystems. The phytoplankton popsicles will be colored with microalgae to create a blue-green color, flavored with lime juice for acidity, and dipped in Atlantic sea salt for a salty surface. More information at

Also On View
Salty > Sour Seas will be open during the ICA’s exhibition Mark Dion: Misadventures of a 21st-Century Naturalist (October 4-December 31). Dion has forged a distinct, interdisciplinary practice by exploring and appropriating scientific methodologies to question how we collect, interpret, and display nature. This monumental exhibition spans 30 years of the artist’s work and brings together several hundred objects—including live birds, books, curiosity cabinets, plant and animal specimens, vintage photos, and much more—for a rare look at the unique course of the artist’s practice.

About the Artist
Over the last decade, Boston-based artist Evelyn Rydz has focused her work on contemporary coastlines and ways our everyday lives impact are impacted by changing oceans. Exploring perceptions of scale, her work draws connections between everyday actions and lasting impacts, fleeting and geologic time, unstable and fixed conditions. The artist’s work has been exhibited the Palmer Art Museum, Penn State University (forthcoming); Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Tufts University Art Gallery; a Smithsonian Traveling Exhibition at the Anchorage Museum, Alaska, USC Fisher Museum, L.A., and CDC Museum, Atlanta; the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston; DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park; Maseeh Hall, MIT, Cambridge; Julie Saul Gallery, NY; El Parque Cultural del Caribe, Barranquilla, Colombia; and Brattleboro Museum, Vermont. Rydz has led community art projects as visiting artist at the MFA, Boston; the ICA, Boston; and MOCA, North Miami. She is currently an Associate Professor at Massachusetts College of Art and Design.

About the ICA
An influential forum for multi-disciplinary arts, the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston has been at the leading edge of art in Boston for 80 years. Like its iconic building on Boston’s waterfront, the ICA offers new ways of engaging with the world around us. Its exhibitions and programs provide access to contemporary art, artists, and the creative process, inviting audiences of all ages and backgrounds to participate in the excitement of new art and ideas. The ICA, located at 25 Harbor Shore Drive, is open Tuesday and Wednesday, 10 AM–5 PM; Thursday and Friday, 10 AM–9 PM (1st Friday of every month, 10 AM–5 PM); and Saturday and Sunday, 10 AM–5 PM.  Admission is $15 adults, $13 seniors and $10 students, and free for members and children 17 and under. Free admission for families at ICA Play Dates (2 adults + children 12 and under) on last Saturday of the month. For more information, call 617-478-3100 or visit our website at Follow the ICA at Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.