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Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)

Old lighting in front of LACMA.

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Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) Review

Without a doubt, this is the focal point of the museum district that runs along Wilshire Boulevard. Chris Burden's Urban Light sculpture, composed of more than 220 restored cast-iron antique street lamps, elegantly marks the location. Inside you'll find one of the country's most comprehensive art collections, with more than 120,000 objects dating from ancient times to the present. Since opening in 1965, the museum now includes numerous buildings that cover more than 20 acres.

Works from the museum's rotating permanent collection include Latin American artists such as Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo, prominent Southern California artists, collections of Islamic and European art, and paintings by Henri Matisse, Rene Magritte, Paul Klee, and Wassily Kandinsky. There's also a solid collection of art representing the ancient civilizations of Egypt, the Near East, Greece, and Rome, plus a vast costume and textiles collection dating back to the 16th century.

The Broad Contemporary Art Museum, designed by Renzo Piano, opened in 2008 and impresses with three vast floors. BCAM presents contemporary art from LACMA's collection in addition to temporary exhibitions that explore the interplay of the present and the past. In 2010, the Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibition Pavilion, a stunning, light-filled space also designed by Renzo Piano, added more exhibit space.

LACMA's other spaces include the Ahmanson Building, which features Art of the Pacific, European, Middle Eastern, South and Southeast Asian collections; the Robert Gore Rifkind Center for German Expressionist Studies; the Art of the Americas Building; the Pavilion for Japanese Art, featuring scrolls, screens, drawings, paintings, textiles, and decorative arts from Japan; the Bing Center, a research library, resource center, and theater; and the Boone's Children's Gallery, located in the Hammer Building, where story time and art lessons are just some of the activities offered. The museum organizes wows visitors with special exhibitions and hosted major traveling shows, including the recent, vast Stanley Kubrick exhibit and the visually stunning James Turrell rrospective. Look for additional special programming as LACMA celebrates its 50th birthday in 2015.

Note that LACMA's resident oiutdoor Stark Bar, is not only eye-catching with its bright red chairs, but has become quite the gathering spot for handcrafted, seasonal cocktails.

Temporary exhibits sometimes require tickets purchased in advance, so check the calendar ahead of time.

    Contact Information

  • Address: 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Miracle Mile, Los Angeles, CA, 90036 | Map It
  • Phone: 323/857–6000
  • Cost: $15
  • Hours: Mon., Tues., and Thurs. 11–5, Fri. 11–8, weekends 10–7
  • Website:
  • Location: Beverly Hills and the Westside
Updated: 04-01-2014

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    Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) Review

    Poorly laid-out, poorly planned and a waste of time when all is said and done. AVOID this museum and be aware most locals think this place is a joke.

    by capecod114, 2/28/10

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