Ellen Matilda Poss Director, Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston
Jill Medvedow is the first Ellen Matilda Poss Director of the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston. Under Medvedow’s leadership, the ICA constructed a new museum on Boston’s waterfront, hiring architects Diller + Scofidio for their first major project. The ICA’s iconic new building opened to critical and public acclaim in 2006, increasing museum attendance tenfold. Alongside the Board of Trustees, Medvedow has successfully led two major capital and endowment campaigns, and has transformed the ICA into one of the nation’s most ambitious centers for contemporary art. At the ICA, Medvedow has created a national model for teen arts education, investing in urban adolescents as future leaders, artists and electorate. With more than 7,000 teens participating in ICA teen education programs annually, ICA teens were recognized by the White House twice over the past year, including a National Arts and Humanities Youth Program award.
Medvedow’s leadership has been consistent throughout her career from her early work in Seattle to her founding of Vita Brevis, a contemporary arts organization that produced temporary projects in nontraditional sites, linking history and landscape to public art. She was the first Deputy Director and Curator of Contemporary Art at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. Medvedow is co-editor of Vita Brevis: History, Landscape, and Art 1998–2003, published by Steidl. Medvedow sits on the national advisory boards of the PBS series Art 21 and the National Arts and Learning Curriculum, she served as Chair of Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick’s Working Group on the Creative Economy, and she is a member of Mayor Martin J. Walsh’s Economic Development Transition Team. Her transformative direction of the ICA is subject of an MIT Sloan School of Management Case Study on Leadership and Risk.