Inspiration at the ICA: Tara Donovan

Inspiration at the ICA: Tara Donovan

If you haven't heard of Tara Donovan its time to go visit the ICA. Not only did she just receive the MacArthur "Genius" Grant, she's having her first major museum survey right here in Boston and the work is borderline indescribable. Donovan works with everyday objects — toothpicks, styrofoam cups, scotch tape — in huge volumes, taking them to the point where they look nothing like their mass-manufactured self but take on an entirely natural, organic, even transcendent persona...

The body of work is a collection from the past decade with one stunning new commission for the ICA, pictured above, made with rolled vellum. There are more images of the exhibit on the ICA website but nothing comes close to seeing these pieces in person — moving around them, watching how the play of light and shadow transforms each piece.

Suspended Styrofoam Cups

Our favorites, in addition to the new commission, were the button stalagmites and drinking straw wall. It totally inspired us to come home and look at our everyday objects in a whole new way.

We couldn't help but think that the brains over at Anthropologie are totally on the same wave length in the retail realm, constantly taking everyday objects to a new aesthetic level.

Tara Donovan runs through January 4, 2009 at the ICA Boston. A wonderful interview where Tara Donovan discusses the origin of her work over at DesignObserver.

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