Letters on the hillside

Last week I took a day off and toured the Los Angeles County Art Museum. I went by myself and I really enjoyed wandering quietly through the halls. It gave me more time to ponder what a piece meant to me and decide what I wanted to take away from the whole experience. Because art is about the experience, right?

And the experience starts outside. The five museum buildings sit proudly along palm-tree-lined Wilshire Boulevard.

Broad Contemporary Art Museum at LACMA

A permanent installation of streetlamps, by Chris Burden, is fun to wander through.

The Street Lamps at LACMA

The Street Lamps at LACMA

And I loved the gridded sculpture garden filled with Rodin and palm trees.

Sculpture Garden at LACMA

Oh, and the view. If you squint your eyes and look at the mountain just to the right of center, see that white bar? That's the Hollywood Sign.

View from LACMA

It's so fun to see in person. It's a looming landmark that you look for from all over the city, like the Eiffel Tower or the Emmaus Triangle. You can see a larger image here that shows the sign more clearly.

While inside the museum my favorite exhibit was New Topographics, a collection of photographs mostly from the 1970s that showed man-made landscapes. The images showed homes and power lines and everyday built objects. The artists did not shy away from the effect man as a whole is having on the environment. Instead of taking Ansel Adams like portraits of serenity, these photographers showed where we live and images of our everyday life. If you are in LA in the next week or so the LACMA is worth a stop.