Boston

“Customized”

Institute of Contemporary Art

“CUSTOMIZED: Art Inspired by Hot Rods, Low Riders and American Car Culture,” was a vast improvement on the Guggenheim's “Art of the Motorcycle.” Organized by assistant curator Nora Donnelly, this ambitious exhibition featured nearly seventy works in all media, roughly divided into three sections: drawings and paintings by car customizers; photographs documenting the community surrounding hot rods and low riders; and examples of contemporary artists' appropriations of the look and attitude of car culture

The ICA's main gallery housed work from the '30s through the '50s by hot-rodder artists, who both customized old cars and made art about their sport. Among the greatest of these was Kenneth Howard (aka Von Dutch). the California mechanic who pioneered the art of pinstriping, flaming, and caricaturing cars in the '40s. Though he was unfortunately represented here only by a surreal snake-charmer

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