Nick Cave’s Soundsuits at the Boston ICA

To see more photos and videos of Nick Cave’s colorful creations, explore the Institute of Contemporary Art location page.

Chicago-based artist Nick Cave constructs his signature “Soundsuits”—vivid, noise-making costumes—from discarded and rediscovered materials. The suits’ varied and whimsical forms directly reflect Cave’s training as a dancer and are often used in dance performances.

The Soundsuits’ origins are darker than their vibrant colors might suggest. Cave created his first suit in 1992 as a response to the Rodney King beating. He told the Washington Post, “I built this sort of suit of armor, and by putting it on, I realized that I could a make a sound from moving in it. It made me think of ideas around protest, and how we should be a voice and speak louder.”

Cave’s suits, along with several freestanding sculptures and paintings, are on display at the Institute of Contemporary Art through May 4.