Here’s yet another thing to add to your “LA to-do list”: The Broad Museum (pronounced like road) located in Downtown Los Angeles on Grand Avenue. Here’s a glimpse of what I saw on opening day. You’ll want to visit the next time you’re in town.
I had a entry ticket for 4:30, thanks to my friend who invited me. Being the early bird that I am, I arrived at around 3 pm asking one of the museum attendants if it was at all possible to go in earlier. She directed me to wait in the 4:00 pm line. I was prepared to wait there when someone who had overheard my conversation generously offered me their extra ticket, and just like that I was able to go right in for the 3 pm entry. Thanks Stranger!
The museum was bustling with people from the moment I entered and there was a clear line for one of the exhibits on the first floor. It was Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirror Room (called the Souls of Millions of Light Years Away). I recognized this from when it was on display in New York in 2013. I missed it back then so I had to see it here. I put in my name and phone number to join the queue. Within seconds I got a text message saying it would be approximately 150 minute wait.
No matter, there was plenty of things to see. I explored the ground floor exhibit first where I was welcomed by some familiar works of art. (If you want to go chronologically it’s suggested you start on the 3rd floor).
Takashi Murakami was one of my highlights on the ground floor. I had seen the pieces before in January at the Gagosian in Chelsea, New York. It put a smile on my face to see it on the opposite coast. I felt like I was in New York again, but instead I was in Los Angeles, a city that is undoubtedly becoming a contemporary art capital in its own right.
Fun fact: the longest artwork in the collection is Takashi Murakami’s In the Land of the Dead, Stepping on the tail of a Rainbow, which measures 82 feet long.
Head upstairs on the 105 foot escalator and it feels like you’re being transported to another world. There’s also a cylindrical glass elevator.
I saw works of art (paintings, sculptures and installations) by some of the art world’s “A-team” of the last few decades. Andy Warhol, Jeff Koons, Roy Liechtenstein, Kara Walker, CY Twombly, Jean Michel Basquiat, Keith Haring, and some five dozen more. The crowd was quite diverse. People were strolling alone or in groups and I was hearing all sorts of accents/languages. It was clear that people were excited to be here and enjoy the eye candy- the top-notch art collection of philanthropists Eli and Edythe Broad which includes works by more than 200 artists. The art had brought everyone together.
The museum itself felt like an amusement park at times, if not for its cavernous interior then for the way that the museum was formatted. It’s maze-like layout made it feel like you were on a treasure hunt, with a gem displayed behind every corner. What’s more, the museum was designed by New York architecture firm diller scofidio + renfro – the design house also responsible for Manhattan’s High Line (one of my favorite places in New York City).
After walking around the 3rd floor a few times through different routes, I headed back downstairs. Sandwiched in between the 3rd and 1st floor is the vault where the Broads’ collection is stored when it’s not on exhibit or loan. Visitors can catch a glimpse of some pieces through the window for a behind the scenes peek.
I finally got an automated text for the Infinity Mirrored room saying I should head over, as my entry would be in 10 minutes. I did and the wait ended up being about 45 minutes, since there was an overflow of people. When I got there though, it was magical. I had 45 seconds to myself in the room. Here’s a little teaser.
Come alone, come with a friend, come with your family. This museum has a lot to see (and plenty of instagram worthy moments). This blog post is only a glimpse of what the museum has on display (I didn’t want to reveal too much).
The Broad is now open to the public with free general admission. Advance online reservations are encouraged.
To reserve click here
The Broad Museum
221 S. Grand Ave,
Los Angeles, CA 90012
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