Museum Mania: LA’s Top Exhibitions to See Now

There’s nothing like a thought provoking, immersive art exhibition to get your creative juices going! This season, you can drink your fill of inspiration, from major retrospectives, to experiential pop-up spaces, and even new interpretations of nature. Fuel your museum mania with a kaleidoscope of LA’s top exhibitions to see now!

Did you know Los Angeles has free museum days? Here’s a cheat sheet, courtesy of DoLA.

World of Light Pop Up Museum

233 S Beaudry Ave 11th Fl.

Los Angeles, CA 90012

World of Light is a collective of forward-thinking global artists, commissioned to create boundless installations inspired by individuality and background diversity. The exhibition offers an engaging experience – fusing art with technology through a collection of sophisticated installations and visual compositions. A truly unique experience that promises to deliver a highly personalized immersive experience.

CONTACT HIGH: A Visual History of Hip-Hop

The Annenberg Space for Photography

2000 Avenue of the Stars

Los Angeles, CA 90067

Celebrating the photographers who have played a critical role in bringing hip-hop’s visual culture to the global stage, CONTACT HIGH: A Visual History of Hip-Hop is an inside look at the work of hip-hop photographers, as told through their most intimate diaries: their unedited contact sheets. Curated by Vikki Tobak, based on the bestselling book of the same name, and with creative direction by Fab 5 Freddy, the photographic exhibition includes nearly 140 works from 60 photographers. Rare videos, memorabilia, and music are included to complement the photographs, demonstrating how the documentation of a cultural phenomenon impacts politics, culture, and social movements around the world. And in a first for the Photo Space, visitors can enjoy Contact High Records, a pop-up record shop featuring rare vinyl spanning the history of hip-hop.

Frank Stella

Los Angeles County Museum of Art

5905 Wilshire Blvd.

Los Angeles, CA 90036

Frank Stella has been a pivotal figure in the development of modern art since the 1950s. Working in multiple mediums, he has created an extensive body of work that has consistently challenged the conventions of art making and expanded its definitions. Over the past 60 years Stella has pushed the boundaries of Abstract Expressionism, helped usher in Minimalism, and blurred distinctions between painting and sculpture, continuously experimenting with new materials, abstract forms, and innovative techniques. LACMA’s Frank Stella exhibition features a selection of works from the museum’s permanent collection—many of which have not been on public view in over 30 years—that represent significant developments in the artist’s oeuvre.

MOCA: 40 for LA

The Museum of Contemporary Art

250 S Grand Ave.

Los Angeles, CA 90012

Thanks to a $10 million donation, which is reported to last for the next five years, MOCA Admission is now totally free. 40 for LA celebrates the forty-year history of MOCA. Offering a behind-the-scenes glimpse into MOCA’s past, this multimedia exhibition features archival materials from the museum’s vault, including rare photographs and lithographs, limited-edition objects, a detailed exhibition and programming timeline, excerpts from the museum’s YouTube video project MOCAtv, and a special homage to all of the artists to whom the museum is indebted. Visitors get an in-depth look at some of the key elements that define the institution: the Grand Avenue location designed by famed Japanese architect Arata Isozaki, a celebrated permanent collection, a history of temporary exhibitions, and the museum’s dedicated board members and patrons.

Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirror Rooms: The Broad

 221 S Grand Ave.

Los Angeles, CA 90012

Two of legendary Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirror Rooms are currently on view at The Broad. Viewers are physically immersed in Infinity Mirrored Room—The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away, entering inside the mirror-lined chamber. In contrast, viewers remain physically outside of Longing for Eternity, observing the reflections on its interior and exterior and peering through windows into the mirror room. These works complement each other, creating two distinct phenomenological experiences of boundlessness and interior and exterior in dialogue with one another.

Alert: This installation is a mirror-lined chamber with flashing LED lights that viewers look into. If you are uncomfortable with flashing lights and/or enclosed, dark spaces, please bypass this experience.

Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles

1717 E 7th St

Los Angeles, CA 90021

The Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (ICA LA) is an epicenter of artistic experimentation and incubator of new ideas. Founded in 1984 as the Santa Monica Museum of Art (SMMoA) and reestablished in 2017 with a new identity and home in Downtown Los Angeles, ICA LA builds upon a distinguished history of bold curatorial vision and innovative programming to illuminate the important untold stories and emerging voices in contemporary art and culture. The museum’s 12,700 square-foot renovated industrial building—designed by wHY Architecture under the leadership of Kulapat Yantrasast—features ample space for exhibitions, public programs, retail pop-ups, integrated offices, and special projects. List of current exhibitions here. Admission is always free.

Unusual Views: Descanso Gardens

1418 Descanso Dr.

La Cañada Flintridge, CA 91011

Descanso Gardens is an urban retreat of year-round natural beauty, internationally renowned botanical collections and spectacular seasonal horticultural displays, with a long history of presenting art in the gardens. Unusual Views showcases the artwork of local artists, providing a different way of looking at nature. Unlike garden landscapes, which tend to invoke images that reflect reality, such as trees, flowers and butterflies, Unusual Views offers an opportunity for risk-taking, for trying something never attempted. Artists were asked to uniquely interpret the garden. through innovative use of media, a personal point of view, and avant-garde representations.

GRAMMY Museum L.A. LIVE

800 W Olympic Blvd.

Los Angeles, CA 90015

The GRAMMY Museum is an interactive, educational museum devoted to the history and winners of the Grammy Awards. The Museum has interactive touch-screens, videos, recording booths, and a collection of historical music artifacts including costumes and instruments from the Grammy Awards, hand-written lyrics, records, and audio/video recordings. Their mission is to educate individuals about the history and cultural significance of American music, and to inspire the next generation to explore and create new forms of music using the roots that have existed in this country for centuries. Current exhibitions here.