Best Los Angeles Art Museums Guide
A vacation in Los Angeles doesn’t have to be confined to studio tours, the Hollywood Walk of Fame or the beaches. Los Angeles has a rich artistic and cultural heritage and boasts some of the top art museums in the world.
We have collected together the top art museums in Los Angeles county for you. These are not necessarily listed by importance, but we have tried to keep them grouped by what part of town they are in.
This is a listing of art museums in Los Angeles. If you are looking to purchase art, see our guide to the best art galleries in Los Angeles. Either way, if you are an art lover or connoisseur, Los Angeles won’t disappoint you!
1. Los Angeles County Museum of Art – LACMA
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is on a section of Wilshire Blvd known as the Miracle Mile and also as Museum Row due to a high proximity of various museums in the area.
LACMA has one of the most extensive and diverse collections of art to be found in any one location. The collection ranges from pre-historic to contemporary art. It also has notable outdoor sculptures, such as the Urban Light sculpture in the forecourt. Created by artist Chris Burden it is considered a Los Angeles signature artwork. It’s also the most “Instagrammed” artwork in the world.
For more information on programs, visit the LACMA website. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is located at 5905 Wilshire Blvd.
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday: 11 am–5 pm
Friday: 11 am–8 pm
Saturday, Sunday: 10 am–7 pm
Closed Wednesdays, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day
Admission ranges from $20 to $25 for adults with discounts for seniors and students. Under 17 admission is free.
2. The Craft and Folk Art Museum
While you are on the Miracle Mile checking out LACMA, head a few blocks east to the Craft and Folk Art Museum. Exhibits might feature textiles, musical instruments or even tattoo art.
If you are in LA near the holiday season, the Craft and Folk Art Museum has an annual holiday market where you can shop for unique, handmade arts and crafts.
5814 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA
3. The Getty Center
Out on the west end of Los Angeles, the Getty Center holds an extremely large collection of fine art and photography.
The Getty Center’s location high on top of a hill and breathtaking views of Los Angeles and the Pacific Ocean make it even more desirable. You’ll want to put the Getty Center on your list of places to go in Los Angeles as much for the experience as the art. The expansive grounds are filled with beautiful gardens and unique modern architecture.
The collections on exhibit vary so check their website to see what the current exhibits are. With some possible exceptions, admission to the Getty Center is free. However the only parking in the area is the Getty parking lot which costs $10 to $15 for all day.
1200 Getty Center Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90049
4. The Getty Villa
If your visit to the Getty Center left you hungry for more, then head to the Getty Villa in Mailbu. This contains billionaire J Paul Getty’s collection of antiquities. One again, not only is the art a major attraction, so is the magnificent Italian villa and commanding views across the Pacific ocean.
5. Annenberg Space for Photography
Also on the west side of Los Angeles is the Annenberg Space for Photography. While photography is one of the broadest and valuable of art forms, it seldom receives the recognition it deserves. Located in Century City the Annenberg Space for Photography explores the art of photography not as just fine art photography but more importantly as an instrument of communication and a catalyst for social change.
2000 Avenue of the Stars
Los Angeles, CA 90067
6. The Fowler Museum
The Fowler Museum is located on the UCLA Campus on the west end of Los Angeles. It focused on the cultural arts of Pacific Islands, Asia and Africa. Interestingly, the Fowler Museum doesn’t list their address, only the address of the best parking lot to use which is: 398 Westwood Plaza, Los Angeles, CA 90095
I suppose they assume that since it’s on the UCLA campus that everyone knows where it is. For those of you from out of town the campus is just east of the 405 Freeway on Sunset Blvd.
7. UCLA Hammer Museum
The UCLA Hammer Museum in Westwood is adjacent to the UCLA campus. It features exhibits from the French masters, to historic political art and to contemporary artists, notably Southern California artists. Contemporary works are considered “edgy.”
10899 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90024
8. Museum of Contemporary Art – MOCA
The Museum of Contemporary Art is the only art museum in Los Angeles that was created by artists. It was created to fill a void and provide the city with a world class contemporary art museum. The main museum is located in downtown Los Angeles next to the the Broad Museum, but it MOCA has two other locations in Los Angeles.
250 S Grand Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90012
9. The Broad
Located across the street from M.O.C.A, The Broad houses a nearly 2,000-piece collection of contemporary art, featuring 200 artists. The collection includes works by Andy Worhol, Cindy Sherman, Jeff Koons Ed Ruscha and more. The museum currently owns 129 works by artist Cindy Sherman, the largest Cindy Sherman collection in the world. Admission is free, there can be a wait to get in.
221 S. Grand Ave.
Los Angeles, CA
10. The Japanese American National Museum
The Japanese American National Museum is located in Los Angeles, California, and dedicated to preserving the history and culture of Japanese Americans. Founded in 1992, it is located in the Little Tokyo area near downtown. The museum is an affiliate within the Smithsonian Affiliations program.
100 N Central Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90012
11. Institute of Contemporary Art
The Institute of Contemporary Art was formerly known as the Santa Monica Museum of Art was located in the Bergamot Station art complex. The museum moved to downtown Los Angeles and changed its name at the same time. The new location is much larger and the museum states that it houses “revelatory exhibitions of works by international artists, dynamic public programs, and inclusive community partnerships reflect the diversity of Los Angeles and the world, fostering critique of the familiar and empathy with the different.”
1717 E 7th St,
Los Angeles, CA
12. Pacific Asia Museum
The Pacific Asia Museum is a smaller museum also located in Pasadena. It features arts and crafts from the Pacific Islands and Asia.
46 N Los Robles Ave, Pasadena, CA
13. American Museum of Ceramic Art
The American Museum of Ceremic Art is located east of Los Angeles in Pomona. The museum preserves and exhibits significant ceramic works from around the world. The works range from ancient times to present.
399 N Garey Ave, Pomona, CA 91767
14. The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens
The art collections at the Huntington in San Marino (near Pasadena) consist of over 36,0000 works of art that are spread through multiple buildings on expansive grounds. The expansive Botanical Gardens at the Huntington are also major draw of both tourists and Angelenos alike. The art collections, library and grounds have the Huntington in a class with LACMA and the Getty.
1151 Oxford Rd, San Marino, CA For more information visit their website.
15. Long Beach Museum of Art
The Long Beach Museum of Art has both a permanent collection and high quality temporary art exhibits. Similar to the Getty Center and Getty Villa it sits on a hill and offers breathtaking views of the ocean.
2300 East Ocean Boulevard, Long Beach, CA 90803
16. The Museum of Neon Art
Los Angeles boasts the only museum of neon art that we know of in the world. The Museum of Neon Art is different, but that’s why you want to experience this one of a kind art collection.
216 S. Brand Blvd.
Glendale, CA 91204