This summer, the ICA will open a new, seasonal space in East Boston called the ICA Watershed. Located in the Boston Harbor Shipyard and Marina in East Boston, the ICA Watershed transforms a 15,000-square-foot, formerly condemned space into a new civic and cultural asset.

The ICA Watershed opens with Diana Thater, the first of many exhibitions in conversation with this unique and historical space on the waterfront. Thater’s installation for the ICA will illuminate the Watershed with colored light and moving-image projections that reflect on the fragility of the natural world.

The Watershed will also feature a gallery dedicated to the rich history of the shipyard and East Boston more broadly, with an overview of the area’s development into the vibrant community it is today. Also enjoy the Harbor Room, a space for gathering and education projects that leads to an outdoor plaza overlooking Boston Harbor and the skyline. This community area launches this summer with an exhibition of photography by ICA teens.

season schedule + HOURS

The Watershed is open Tuesday–Sunday, 10 AM–5 PM, July 4 through October 8.
It’s closed Mondays. We will be open for special community days on Labor Day + Columbus Day.

Members see it first!
Special Preview Days:
The Watershed will open with special preview days for ICA Members and the East Boston community on Jun 30, Jul 1 + Jul 3.

Admission + ferry reservations

Admission to the Watershed is free for all.

Purchase an ICA admission ticket, or become an ICA member, and enjoy complimentary ferry service to and from Seaport.

Advanced ferry tickets can be reserved online a month in advance. Tickets may also be reserved day-of at the Box Office in the ICA main building or at the Watershed.

Children 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult when using the ferry service. Please call the Box Office at 617-478-3100 to reserve tickets for families with children.

Ferry Reservations for ICA Members  
Members reserve first! 

  • For July visits: tickets available June 19
  • For August visits: tickets available July 1
  • For September + October visits: tickets available August 1

Ferry Reservations for General Public

  • For July visits: tickets available June 29
  • For August visits: tickets available July 15
  • For September + October visits: tickets available August 15

All ticket release dates subject to change.

Getting There

The Watershed is located within the Boston Harbor Shipyard and Marina at 256 Marginal Street.

  • Transportation between the ICA and the Watershed is available by ferry. (Space is limited; availability is first-come, first-served. See “Admission and Ferry Reservations” above for more information). Ferry service is provided through Boston Harbor Cruises. A step on and three steps down are required to board; wheelchairs and strollers may be brought on board if they are collapsible and light enough for crew to handle. Boston Harbor Cruises crew is available for assistance.
  • Visitors can also reach the Watershed by public transportation (blue line to Maverick), private water taxis, and by foot.
    Please note: For safety reasons, bicycles are not permitted within the shipyard. Bike racks and a Blue Bike station are available at nearby Piers Park.
  • Accessible parking is available at the Watershed; there is no public parking.

Accessibility

  • The Watershed is fully wheelchair and stroller accessible. Visitors who use wheelchairs may be dropped off or park directly in front of the building.
  • See details about ferry accessibility above in “Getting There.”
  • Assistive-listening devices are available at the Welcome Desk. Sign language interpretation is available where necessitated by programming; please contact the Box Office at vistorservices@icaboston.org or 617-478-3103 in advance to request.
  • Service animals are welcome.
  • Large-format texts are available; please ask a staff member for assistance.
  • Wheelchairs and gallery stools are available upon request
  • Self-serve visitor lockers are available on a first come first served basis

    Please contact the ICA at visitorservices@icaboston.org or 617-478-3103 with accessibility-related inquiries.

About the Watershed

Located in the Boston Harbor Shipyard and Marina in East Boston, the ICA Watershed transforms a 15,000-square-foot, formerly condemned space into a new civic and cultural asset. Award-winning firm Anmahian Winton Architects designed the renovation of the derelict former copper pipe facility, conserving its industrial feel while restoring the building for new use.

Each summer, the ICA will invite one artist to create a site-specific work or installation. In addition to a flexible space for exhibitions, programming, and workshops, the Watershed will house an orientation gallery introducing visitors to the historic shipyard and a waterside gathering place with stunning harbor views.

The ICA wishes to extend its enormous gratitude to the East Boston community and to the organizations who have partnered with us to co-develop unique art experiences that respond to community needs and interests: the Boston Harbor Shipyard and Marina, Donald McKay K-8 School, East Boston High School, East Boston Neighborhood Health Center, East Boston Social Centers, Maverick Landing Community Services, the Massachusetts Port Authority, Piers Park Sailing Center, Samuel Adams Elementary School, Sociedad Latina at Mario Umana Academy, and Zumix.

The Watershed represents an exciting and creative mode of growth for the museum. With this project, the ICA will make a cross-harbor connection that is central to our vision of art, civic life, and urban vitality. It takes art beyond our walls, building upon a decade-long history of public art projects that bring together landscape, history, and contemporary art. The new facility is a central component of the ICA’s recently completed five-year strategic plan, A Radical Welcome, designed to deepen the vibrant intersection of contemporary art and civic life in Boston.


Free admission to the Watershed is made possible by the generosity of Alan and Vivien Hassenfeld and the Hassenfeld Family Foundation.