Institute of Contemporary Art Appoints Anthony Elms as New Curator
PHILADELPHIA, PA - The Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania, is pleased to
announce that Anthony Elms will be joining the ICA as Associate Curator. Anthony
has worked as an independent curator and writer, and he was Assistant Director
of Gallery 400 at the University of Illinois at Chicago for six years. He edits and is
the curator of WhiteWalls, an alternative space for artists’ publication projects
founded in the 1970s. Anthony is just completing work as part of the organizational
team behind this year’s PERFORMA visual art performance biennial in New York.
“It is common to think of museums like the ICA as non-collecting, but that isn't true,”
Anthony said. “They do not have art objects, but they collect histories and
experiences with the artists that have exhibited. In that sense, I could not be
happier to join a museum with the distinguished and energetic collection of the ICA.”
“I am looking forward to having Anthony’s vision, and his passion for publications,
enrich the work of our stellar curatorial team,” says Robert Chaney, Interim Director.
“We met Anthony when he co-curated the Sun Ra exhibition that ICA hosted,
organized by Hyde Park Art Center," adds Senior Curator Ingrid Schaffner. "This is a
wonderful outcome to our first collaboration,” adds Senior Curator Ingrid Schaffner.
Anthony’s recent projects include Blast Counterblast; More Alive Than Those Who
Made Them; Glenn Ligon / A People on the Cover, and Unicorn Basking in the Light
of Three Glowing Suns. He was a co-curator of Pathways to Unknown Worlds: Sun
Ra, El Saturn and Chicago's Afro-Futurist Underground 1954-1968, which enjoyed
enormous success when it traveled to ICA in 2009. His writings have appeared in
Afterall, Art Asia Pacific, Art Papers, Artforum, May Revue, Modern Painters, New
Art Examiner, and Time Out Chicago, and he has also written essays for numerous
catalogues. He received a BFA in painting from Michigan State University and an
MFA from the University of Chicago, and he continues to exhibit as an artist. In
addition, Anthony is an enthusiastic drummer and record collector. He is also
interested in ghosts.