If the long lines at Frank Lloyd Wright’s newly reopened Hollyhock House were any indicator, the art scene is alive and well in Los Angeles. Adding to the excitement and prestige of the city’s blossoming art scene is the in-progress Broad Museum.
The contemporary art museum is located in downtown Los Angeles on Grand Avenue, and upon its opening later this year will feature contemporary art pieces and installations, including those belonging to the museum’s namesake, Eli Broad.
The construction of the museum has been hotly contested and delayed several times, but earlier this year it was announced that doors will officially open to the public September 20, 2015. In the mean time, revelers had a chance to get a sneak preview of the curiously building Sunday, February 15, when the near empty galleries of the Broad opened for a few hours to the public.
Masses of curious onlookers filtered into the not-quite-yet finished museum. Reminders of the ongoing construction were found throughout the building, one of the freight elevators was still lined with plywood while galleries consisted of vast spaces, yet unobstructed by partition walls.
Still to see the museum at all and even in this state was a thrill for many. The building boasts a curious design from the firm Diller Scofidio + Renfro. The facade features a latticed “veil,” giving the structure a honeycomb-like feel. Inside, the museum boasts 120,000 square feet of space, two floors of which will feature works from philanthropist and museum benefactor Eli Broad’s personal collection.
At the sneak peak, Broad was unbelieving of the reality of this immense project.
“This is just a dream come true,” he said to The Los Angeles Times. “We’ve been at this five years, a bit longer than I’d have liked, but the result is fantastic. It’s a very complicated building; I consider this a triumph.”
Los Angeles’ Art Culture Well Represented at Event
In order to give locals a taste of what’s to come in September, the Broad Museum charged $10 admission at the sneak peek event. Once the museum is open, all permanent exhibits will be free to the public with special exhibits accessible at an additional cost.
Among the few art exhibits on display were large-scale art installations by Swedish artist BJ Nilsen and Los Angeles artist Yann Novak. Art lovers and figures such as Catherine Opie, Sterling Ruby and Mark Bradford, former Mayor Richard Riordan and actor Michael York were on hand to celebrate. About 3,000 people attended the event and marveled at what is sure to be another important piece in the evolving culture and community of Los Angeles.
“This whole avenue, it’s going to become the contemporary arts center of the world,” said Riordan to The Los Angeles Times.
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