Photo by Chuck Choi
The ICA is now open, with extensive new health and safety protocols in place. Please review the information below before your visit.
Some exhibitions have been extended or postponed due to the pandemic, and Yayoi Kusama: LOVE IS CALLING has been de-installed following a review of air flow and safety needs. See full exhibition calendar
General + Safety
What measures is the ICA taking to ensure healthy visits?
The ICA has implemented extensive measures to enable physical distancing and a contactless experience at the museum:
- A limited number of visitors may enter the galleries at any time; advance ticket purchase is required (see more info below) except for certain special discounts
- Check in will be contactless
- All staff and visitors are required to wear a face covering (see further information below) while in the building in accordance with state and local regulations
- Staff and visitors are asked to maintain 6 feet of physical distance at all times
- Cleaning of high-touch areas has been increased throughout the building
- Disinfectant gel and wipes are available throughout the museum. We ask that visitors refrain from using their own gels, sprays, or other liquids while in the galleries.
- All printed materials and exhibition labels and text have been moved to digital platforms accessible via mobile device at icaboston.org/welcome
- Food and drink are not allowed in the museum at this time
- Elevator capacity is limited to 4 visitors or 1 family/party at a time
- ICA Store capacity is limited
- Restroom capacity is limited
- Coat and bag check will not be available; only handbags 11” x 14” or smaller will be allowed.
- See Visit Policy here.
Do I need to quarantine before visiting the ICA?
Per state guidelines, all visitors and returning residents entering Massachusetts from high-risk states must quarantine for 14 days upon arrival or produce a negative COVID test. The ICA requests visitors adhere to these policies. Learn more.
Do I have to wear a face covering?
All ICA staff, visitors, and contractors are required to wear face coverings at all times inside the building. Exceptions are made for visitors with health exemptions and children under 2; face covering use by children 2 years of age and up to the age of 5 is encouraged but should be at the discretion of the child’s parent or guardian at this time.
According to state guidelines, when you wear a cloth mask, it should:
- Cover your nose and mouth,
- Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face,
- Be secured with ties or ear loops,
- Include multiple layers of fabric,
- Allow for breathing without restriction, and
- Be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape.
Gaiters in particular are not considered effective.
Is everything in the building open?
Spaces which do not allow for physical distancing are temporarily closed, including the Bank of America Art Lab, Poss Family Mediatheque, and Barbara Lee Family Foundation Theater.
Why isn’t LOVE IS CALLING open? When can I see it again?
Due to the small size of Yayoi Kusama’s LOVE IS CALLING and its precise specifications by the artist, the museum has decided to de-install LOVE IS CALLING following a review of air flow and safety needs. As with many consequences of the pandemic, we are disappointed. However, this work of art is part of the ICA collection and we look forward to a future when we can safely install it again. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause, and appreciate your understanding and patience during this time.
What cleaning protocols do you have in place during the pandemic?
ICA cleaning protocols have been elevated and include frequent cleaning of high-touch surfaces throughout the day and deep cleaning every evening.
Are you making any changes to climate control or air filtration?
We are increasing fresh air intake and our air handlers are outfitted with MERV14 final filtration. We have increased the run time of our exhaust fans and air handlers to allow for two hours of air exchange before and after occupancy.
What protocols do staff have to follow?
All staff must take a self-health assessment before entering the building, and follow all safety protocols as outlined by the CDC, state, and city, including wearing face coverings whenever in the building.
Are you gathering information for contact tracing?
Yes, we are collecting that information for visitors through our online ticketing system and directly from any visitors who purchase onsite.
Why don’t visitors have to have their temperature taken?
We ask visitors to conduct their own health assessment before entering the building including assessing if they have a fever.
Have you had a known case of COVID-19?
Protocols are in place to inform staff and visitors if they have come in close contact with someone who has reported contracting COVID-19. Otherwise we are obligated to keep all medical information private.
Are refreshments available for purchase?
Our café service is temporarily suspended until further notice. Visitors may consume their own snacks on the covered Grandstand behind the museum or visit one of the many nearby businesses listed on our neighborhood map.
Can I bring food or drink into the museum?
At this time, visitors are asked not to consume food or drink in the building. The covered Grandstand behind the building is available for eating and drinking, along with outdoor tables and chairs.
What can I bring to the museum?
Because space at the museum is limited, we respectfully request that visitors travel light! The ICA does not allow bulky items in the galleries, including: backpacks of any size, shopping bags, umbrellas, skateboards, helmets, yoga mats, and other items 11 x 14 inches (28 x 35.5 cm) or larger. For safety, suitcases and large musical instruments are not permitted in the building. Short-term luggage storage can be found at South Station or Rowes Wharf Water Taxi (if you are using their water taxi service). The museum reserves the right to refuse other items. Additional items that are not permitted in the galleries include food, beverages, water bottles, poster tubes, flowers, and balloons. Visitors are permitted to wear coats in the galleries.
Where can I park to visit the ICA?
The ICA does not own a parking lot. Limited street parking is available near the museum. Paid parking lots are also available, and visitors may be dropped off right in front of the museum. See additional parking options here.
Is the ICA Watershed open?
The ICA will continue to use the Watershed as a food distribution site through spring. In partnership with East Boston community organizations and the museum’s caterer, The Catered Affair, more than 2,000 boxes of much-needed fresh produce and dairy have already been delivered to East Boston families. The Watershed will reopen to the public in summer 2021 with a new site-specific installation by artist Firelei Báez.
Are timed tickets required?
Yes. Advance timed tickets are required for entry to the museum. We ask visitors to arrive within their designated time slot; you may stay through closing. Last entry is 20 minutes before closing.
Do I need a timed ticket even when the museum is free, as on Free Thursday Nights?
Yes, timed tickets are required for free days and nights. Timed tickets for Free Thursday Nights become available at 10 AM the morning of.
What happens if I miss my time slot?
Your ticket is valid for entry during the listed timeframe. If you arrive after the entry time displayed on your ticket we will be unable to guarantee your admission – however we will do our best to accommodate you with a later entry time. No refunds will be issued for a missed time slot.
How long can I stay in the museum?
Once you check in with your timed ticket, you may stay until museum closing time.
I have a free admission pass, or am eligible for free admission. How do I get a timed ticket?
For free passes, reciprocal member benefits, and some discounts, including Blue Star, EBT, and for federal disability benefit recipients, request tickets here
Please note: some passes or identification cards may need to be presented at check-in to verify your discount.
I’m a corporate member. How do I get a timed ticket?
Corporate members may request a ticket by filling out a request form and our visitor services team will complete your order. Please note that you will need to use your company email address to use this benefit.
I’m a university member. How do I get a timed ticket?
University members can reserve tickets in advance here. Please submit your request at least one day prior to your visit to help ensure you receive your ticket.
Do children need tickets?
Yes. Every person, including children, infants, and ICA members, must have a timed ticket to enter.
How can I reschedule my visit if I’m sick or have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19?
If you need to reschedule your visit due to COVID-19, please email email@example.com and our Visitor Services team will assist you.
How do I login to the ICA site to reserve tickets?
If you are a current ICA member or have previously purchased tickets on our website, you already have a web account.
Please enter the email associated with your account to log in or to recover your password if needed.
If you are new to the museum, please create an account.
Can I join as an ICA member and reserve my tickets early?
Yes! Join today for access to the member pre-sale.
Additional benefits of membership include:
- Unlimited year-round admission to the ICA
- 10% discount at the ICA store and coffee cart
- Discounts at select area businesses
- Subscriptions to ICA member communications
- Access to virtual member programming
- Member pricing on tickets for virtual film screenings and performances presented by the ICA
Please note, advance reservations are viewable only when logged on to the ICA website as an active member during the member presale. Please complete your membership transaction and make sure you are logged into your member account to view available time slots.
Are there any special hours for members?
Yes! Members have the museum to themselves for Member Mornings every Saturday and Sunday from 10 AM to 11 AM, starting in September 2020.
Can I renew my existing membership in person?
Yes, members will be able to renew at the desk while remaining socially distanced, however, we encourage members to renew or join online.
How do I reserve my free member tickets?
Advance reservations are available online here. There will also be a limited number of tickets available in person.
Please note, to utilize your free membership tickets you must be logged on to the ICA website as an active member. If you are a current ICA member you already have a web account. If you do not know your password, If you do not know your password, please enter the email address associated with your membership account.
If you are having trouble signing in, you can reset your password or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can I visit without advance reservations?
We recommend securing timed tickets in advance at icaboston.org, however walk up tickets will also be available.
Can I use my single-use admissions passes for admission?
Single-use admission passes can be redeemed in person just present your passes to our Visitor Services team. Please note single-use admission passes cannot be booked online at this time.
I receive free admission through a reciprocal program; can I use this for online reservations?
Members of the Whitney Museum at the dual level or above or any members of the MOD/CO or MARP reciprocal program can use their membership for entry to the museum. Please note that to utilize your free reciprocal admission you will need to obtain your ticket in person, as these benefits cannot be used online.
I receive free admission through my college or university; can I use this for online reservations?
Students, Faculty, and Staff from these institutions receive free admission to the museum by presenting a valid student ID to our Visitor Service Staff. Reserve tickets in advance now
Events and group visits
Can I schedule a group visit?
Group visits, tours, and on-site programs and activities are suspended until further notice. If you are a teacher or group leader interested in learning more about our virtual visit pilots, please email email@example.com.
Will wheelchairs and seating be available?
Wheelchairs and portable gallery stools will be available upon request and regularly cleaned and disinfected.
I can’t wear a face covering. Can I still visit?
Visitors who cannot wear a face covering due to disability or medical conditions will be admitted and asked to closely adhere to six-foot physical distancing requirements. Please see Visitor Services staff upon arrival for more information.
Are large print materials available?
No printed materials will be available at the museum at this time. All educational and visitor materials and information will be available on icaboston.org.
Can I bring my stroller to the museum?
Strollers are permitted in the museum.
Are service animals allowed?
Service animals are allowed throughout the ICA.
The ICA is committed to maintaining a respectful and safe environment for all at the museum. The ICA has a zero tolerance policy for racist, discriminatory, or harassing behavior, and reserves the right to remove any person acting in an unacceptable or inappropriate manner.
By entering, visitors agree to comply with ICA policies, guidelines, and rules, including but not limited to wearing a face covering and adhering to 6-foot physical distancing guidelines. Visitors to the ICA are personally responsible for their safety and actions. Because the ICA is open to the public, there is a risk of contracting COVID-19 even while complying with ICA-enforced guidelines from the CDC, the state, and the city of Boston.
Do you have a question you don’t see here? Please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.