The Broad Contemporary Art Museum
The Broad is a contemporary art museum in downtown Los Angeles. The museum was founded by philanthropists Eli and Edythe Broad, who also funded the Broad Contemporary building at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). The distinctive white honeycomb-covered building is located just south of the Walt Disney Concert Hall across Grand Avenue from the Museum of Contemporary Art. The addition of The Broad to the Museum of Contemporary Art's two downtown campuses, Gallery Row and the Downtown L.A. Arts District, makes the area world-class destination for contemporary art, from fine art to street art.
The three-story building, designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro, is a "veil-and-vault" concept where the museum's "vault" is both the exhibit area and the museum archive, on view through special windows in concrete alcoves on the stairway. The "veil" is the lacy, honeycombed covering of the building, which allows natural light to come through.
A green plaza on the south side of the museum connects Hope Street and Grand Avenue and provides an outdoor program space for the museum and green space for the neighborhood. The museum's restaurant named Otium, developed by L.A. restaurateur Bill Chait with Chef Tim Hollingsworth, is located on the plaza outside the main museum building.
The Mobile App
The Broad's free mobile app includes multiple audio tours that discuss the building's art and architecture. It also includes a family-friendly tour narrated by LeVar Burton and supplementary materials on the artists and artwork in the collection. You can also use the app to make and review reservations.
Admission is free, but timed tickets are recommended to avoid long waits and can be reserved online. Tickets are also available on site for same-day or future visits, but you may have a long wait for same day visits. You can check Twitter for updates on how long the wait is in the standby line.
221 South Grand Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Parking: You can pay for parking by the hour or flat-rate for weeknights after 5 p.m. or weekends with validation in the garage under the museum.
Metro: Red or Purple Line to Civic Center/Grand Park Station (four blocks)
New Kid in the Neighborhood
Notice the contrasting architecture of The Broad museum compared to its next-door neighbor, the Walt Disney Concert Hall.
A giant stack of plates "Untitled" (1995) by Robert Therien welcomes visitors on the first floor of The Broad. The lobby is a series of gray concrete caves that lead to different exhibit spaces, the escalator, and the gift shop.
The escalator ride up to the third-floor galleries at The Broad gives you an expanding view of the rooftop portion of "The Veil." This is the name that architect Elizabeth Diller gave for the white "lace" or honeycombed surface that completely covers the building.
Yayoi Kusama's "Infinity Mirrored Room"
One of the highlights of the collection on initial exhibit at The Broad was Yayoi Kusama's "Infinity Mirrored Room—The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away." You step into a mirrored room with a reflective pool and the door closes. You're all alone with your many reflections and a galaxy of lights reflecting infinity. Each visitor gets 45 seconds alone in the room.
Due to demand, you can schedule an appointment to have a turn inside so you don't have to wait as long. Check for a tablet near the entrance to electronically check in with your phone number, and receive a text when it's your turn to line up.
Jeff Koons' "Tulips" at The Broad
Jeff Koons' "Tulips" is one of many pieces by the artist who has been a long-time favorite with Eli and Edythe Broad. The pieces are made of mirror-polished stainless steel with a transparent color coating, a technique he has used on a number of pieces in the collection.
Blue Balloon Dog
Jeff Koons' "Balloon Dog (Blue)" is another one of his mirrored stainless steel pieces shown at The Broad. This particular gallery is filled with work by Koons.
"Under the Table"
Robert Therien's "Under the Table" is a giant table and chairs that takes up an entire gallery. It's big enough to walk under the table, so you can get a toddler or pet's perspective.
The Vault, or archive, at The Broad is on display to the public via windows in the stairway from the first to the third floor. Don't worry: there's also an escalator straight to the third-floor galleries and an elevator that also stops at the second-floor offices so you can take a peek. The flow is designed for visitors to take the escalator up to the top first, then make their way back down the stairs to the first floor exhibits and gift shop.
The View Through the Veil
In most areas, you don't actually see much through the "veil" covering the entire museum. However, at the north end from the third-floor galleries, there's a peek at another architectural landmark, the Disney Concert Hall next door.
The costumes, "Tichy 4" and "Tichy 5," worn by live models, are components of Polish-born, London-based artist Goshka Macuga's larger concept tapestry "Death of Marxism, Women of All Lands Unite" (2013). It depicts a picnic at the grave of Karl Marx in London's East Cemetery and incorporates photos taken by the Czech photographer Miroslav Tichy.
Nighttime at the Museum
Even if you don't have time to stop inside The Broad, try to see it at nighttime. It creates a magnificent display when lit up.