|LACMA, 1965, designed by Wm. Pereira & Associates. Photo from L.A. Library Archives|
On Thanksgiving day, the weather was warm and crystal clear in Los Angeles. Since I didn't have to do any preparation or cooking for our family feast, Larry and I decided to take a walk in Hancock Park, around the grounds of the L.A. County Art Museum on Wilshire Blvd.
I remember when LACMA was built. The original buildings are beautiful. When I was a tiny girl, we used to visit the Art Museum collection at the LA County Museum of Natural History located at Exposition Park, near USC. The art collection was hidden away, behind the dinosaur bones. Once our current Museum was built on Wilshire, the collection of modern art was added, modern sculptures were displayed, shows were mounted of avant garde artists! It was another miracle on Wilshire!
Today, the beautiful mid-20th century modern architecture of the original LACMA complex is obscured by the Anderson Building from Wilshire Blvd.. The new Broad Building also faces on Wilshire, between the Museum and the historic May Company Department Store, designed 1939 by Albert C. Martin and Samuel A. Marx. LACMA now occupies May Company and it is being re-configured to house the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures.
On Thursday, we walked around to the back side of LACMA to view the old architecture. Thankfully, much of it still exists. The Sculpture Garden is lovely. The La Brea Tar Pits and George C. Page Museum are fascinating and the Pavillion for Japanese Art is housed in a stand-out building, designed by architect, Bruce Goff.
|Pavillion for Japanese Art|
|Frieze surrounding Page Museum|
Naturally, we walked over to the west end of the Park to see The Rock. The transportation of this sculpture from the California desert was one of the major community moments in the City of Los Angeles. Everyone came out to watch The Rock aka "Levitated Mass" lumber toward LACMA.
|It's all about the CONCRETE housing The Rock|
I'm very glad that the original architecture has not been totally obliterated by the new buildings at LACMA. For this I am thankful.