The Best Art Museums to Visit in Los Angeles

Welcome to sunny Los Angeles, a city that boasts more than just beautiful beaches and lively nightlife. If you’re an art lover, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the abundance of museums, galleries, and exhibitions that LA has to offer. From contemporary art to classic masterpieces, there’s something for everyone. In this article, we’ll be exploring the best art museums in Los Angeles that you won’t want to miss.

Los Angeles Art Museums: A Guide to Appreciating Art in The City of Angels

The rich art scene in Los Angeles

Los Angeles is a city with a vast and diverse art scene that offers something for every art enthusiast. From classic to contemporary art, Los Angeles has it all. The city has a rich history of art, and its numerous museums and galleries showcase some of the most beautiful and thought-provoking artworks from ancient to modern times.

The art scene in Los Angeles has grown in popularity in recent years, thanks to the addition of a new wave of emerging artists who are pushing the boundaries of traditional art. The city has embraced this new movement, and it has led to Los Angeles being regarded as one of the most exciting and dynamic art cities in the world.

The top 3 art museums in Los Angeles

1. The Getty Center

The Getty Center is one of Los Angeles’ top cultural attractions. It is located in the Brentwood area and features an extensive collection of European and American art, photography, and sculptures. The museum sits on a hilltop, offering stunning views of the city and the ocean. The museum’s galleries are spacious and contain some of the most iconic and well-known works of art from around the world.

2. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art, commonly known as LACMA, is located in Mid-Wilshire and is one of the largest art museums in the western U.S. The museum has over 150,000 works of art, ranging from ancient to modern times, and it is divided into several sections. There is a notable collection of art from Asia, Latin America, and the Islamic world, as well as an impressive display of contemporary art.

3. The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA)

The Museum of Contemporary Art, located in Downtown LA, is a museum dedicated to contemporary art. The museum has an impressive collection of art from all over the world, featuring pieces that challenge the traditional definition of art. The museum also has an outdoor plaza where visitors can enjoy live performances and other events.

Other noteworthy art museums in Los Angeles

1. The Broad

The Broad is a contemporary art museum located in downtown Los Angeles. It features works from some of the biggest names in the contemporary art world, including Jeff Koons, Cindy Sherman, and Takashi Murakami. The museum’s collection is ambitious, and they regularly feature rotating exhibitions, making it a must-visit destination for art lovers around the world.

2. Peterson Automotive Museum

The Peterson Automotive Museum is an unconventional museum that showcases the evolution of cars and how they have played a role in shaping American culture. The museum has an extensive collection of cars, including many classic and rare vehicles from different eras.

3. Annenberg Space for Photography

The Annenberg Space for Photography is a photography museum located in Century City. It is a unique museum that features both digital and print photography and highlights the art of this medium. The museum regularly hosts exhibitions that showcase the work of iconic and up-and-coming photographers from around the world.

In conclusion, Los Angeles is a city that is rich in art and culture. Its museums and galleries offer a diverse range of art and are a must-visit destination for anyone who wants to appreciate art in all its forms. Los Angeles is an exciting and dynamic art city, and it is no wonder that it has become a hub for emerging artists and art enthusiasts from around the world.

Current and upcoming exhibitions in Los Angeles Art Museums

The Getty Center

The Getty Center is a popular destination for art lovers in Los Angeles. With its stunning architecture, beautiful gardens, and impressive collections, the museum has something to offer for everyone. Here are some of the current and upcoming exhibitions:

  1. Late Roman Hunting Scenes: If you are interested in ancient Roman art, this exhibition is a must-see. It features a collection of hunting scenes from the late Roman Empire in the 4th century. The vivid colors and intricate details of the artworks are truly breathtaking.
  2. The Legacy of Ancient Palmyra: This exhibition showcases artifacts from the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra, which was destroyed by ISIS in 2015. The exhibition highlights the rich cultural heritage of the city and its importance in the history of the Middle East.
  3. In Focus: LA Women’s Photography: This exhibition celebrates the work of female photographers from the Los Angeles area. The exhibition features a diverse range of photographic styles, from portraiture to landscape photography, and highlights the contributions of women to the art form.


The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) is another must-visit destination for art lovers in Los Angeles. The museum has an impressive collection of art and artifacts from around the world. Here are some of the current and upcoming exhibitions:

  1. Fiji: Art & Life in the Pacific: This exhibition presents a collection of art and artifacts from Fiji, highlighting the unique artistry from the region. The exhibition showcases a diversity of styles and materials, from finely crafted tapa cloths to ornate wooden sculptures.
  2. Yoshitomo Nara: This exhibition features the work of the Japanese artist known for his playful and colorful art. Nara’s art is influenced by popular culture, manga, and anime, and has gained popularity around the world for its playful and whimsical style.
  3. Vera Lutter: Museum in the Camera: This exhibition showcases large-scale photographs of museum interiors and exhibitions captured using a camera obscura technique. The exhibition invites visitors to see the museum in a new light, by presenting a different perspective on the architecture and art displayed in the galleries.


The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in Los Angeles is dedicated to showcasing contemporary art from around the world. The museum’s exhibitions are constantly changing, so there is always something new to discover. Here are some of the current and upcoming exhibitions:

  1. Bill Viola: Slowly Turning Narrative: This exhibition features video installations by the contemporary artist Bill Viola. Viola’s art explores themes of spirituality, human emotions, and the passage of time. The exhibition invites visitors to experience Viola’s immersive artworks in a contemplative environment.
  2. Stories of Almost Everyone: This exhibition explores the relationship between objects and their stories, and questions the traditional approach to displaying art objects in museums. The exhibition presents a range of objects, from discarded packaging to ancient artifacts, and invites visitors to reflect on the meanings behind these objects.
  3. Kerry James Marshall: Mastry: This exhibition exhibits the work of one of the most significant contemporary painters in America. Marshall’s art explores themes of race, identity, and representation, and has been influential in shaping contemporary art in the United States. The exhibition presents a survey of Marshall’s career, from his early works to his most recent paintings.

Additional Tips for Visiting Los Angeles Art Museums

Los Angeles is known for its vibrant arts scene, and the city is home to a number of world-class museums. Whether you’re an art enthusiast or just looking for an interesting day out, the museums of LA offer something for everyone. Here are some additional tips to enhance your visit to Los Angeles art museums:

Plan your visit ahead of time

Before you visit any museum, it’s important to plan ahead. Check the museum websites for hours, admission fees, and exhibition schedules. This will help you avoid any surprises and make the most of your time at the museum. Some museums offer free admission on certain days or have special discounts for students or seniors. It’s also a good idea to check the museum’s parking options ahead of time, as parking in LA can be challenging.

Take advantage of guided tours

Many museums offer free or affordable guided tours, which can provide insight and enhance your overall museum experience. These tours are typically led by knowledgeable museum staff or volunteers who can answer any questions you may have about the art on display. Some museums also offer audio guides that allow you to explore at your own pace. Guided tours are a great way to learn more about the art and make the most of your visit.

Respect the art and the museum environment

When visiting a museum, it’s important to be respectful of the art and the museum environment. You should always follow the museum’s rules, including no flash photography and not touching the artwork. If you have any questions about the rules, ask a museum staff member for clarification. It’s also important to be mindful of other visitors and not disturb the peaceful museum environment. Loud conversations and phone calls should be avoided, and children should be supervised at all times.

By following these tips, you can make the most of your visit to Los Angeles art museums. Whether you’re visiting the Getty Center, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), or any other museum in the city, there is always something new to discover and appreciate.

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