Navigating art spaces in any big city can be a challenge, but this is especially the case when it comes to a sprawling region like Los Angeles. I reached out to Abe Ahn and Matt Stromberg, two writers who have been contributing to Hyperallergic regularly from Los Angeles for many years now, to put together a guide to some of their favorite galleries, museums, and nonprofits. We quickly realized it would be impossible to be comprehensive, so we tried to focus on spaces that originated in LA and have accomplished truly outstanding work. I’m sure this list will continue to grow as new spaces open and current ones evolve, but in the meantime, we hope this guide to 49 venues will come in handy whether you already live in LA or are here on a visit.

The guide is divided by general neighborhoods and regions — depending on how ambitious you are, you might even be able to visit more than one space in each “cluster” on a given day!

Elisa Wouk Almino 


Installation view, Brooks + Scarpa, DENSE-CITY: Housing for Quality of Life and Social Capital at 18th Street Arts Center’s Airport Gallery (photo by Geoff Palomino, courtesy of 18th Street Arts Center)

18th Street Arts Center

Where: 1639 18th Street, Santa Monica, CA (18th Street Campus); 3026 Airport Avenue, Santa Monica, California (Airport Campus)
Hours: 11am–5pm, Monday through Friday, 18th Street Campus (free admission); 1-5 pm, Monday, 11am–5pm, Tuesday through Saturday, Airport Campus (free admission); closed Saturday and Sunday except during public events

18th Street Arts Center has stayed true to its artist- and community-centered mission since its early years as a space for feminist artists, performance art, and activism. Today, it offers events and exhibitions in conjunction with residencies for Los Angeles–based and international artists. The center’s opening of a second campus at Santa Monica Airport is the latest expansion of its cultural footprint and artist services.

Raymond Thompson, Jr. (image courtesy the Annenberg Center for Photography)

Annenberg Space for Photography

Where: 2000 Avenue of the Stars, Century City, Los Angeles
Hours: 11am–6pm, Wednesday through Sunday (free admission)

Although high-rise office buildings and the Westfield shopping mall might be the primary destinations for most visitors to Century City, the Annenberg Space for Photography is worth the trek for anyone interested in the photographic medium. Dedicated to photographic artworks and photojournalism, the Annenberg Space for Photography exhibits both film and digital images, the latter via a cutting-edge 4K digital gallery.

Blum & Poe

Where: 2727 S. La Cienega Blvd., Culver City, California
Hours: 10am–6pm, Tuesday through Saturday (free admission)

Tim Blum and Jeff Poe opened their first space in Santa Monica in 1994, with an installation by British artist Anya Gallaccio, for which she smeared chocolate over the gallery walls. Twenty-five years later, Blum & Poe is one of LA’s most prominent homegrown galleries, with a 22,000-square-foot anchor space in Culver City, not to mention outposts in New York and Tokyo. Their list of artists includes emerging and established artists from LA and beyond including Jim Shaw, Mark Grotjahn, Julian Schnabel, Henry Taylor, and Pia Camil. Alongside ambitious solo shows, their exhibition program features well-researched historical surveys.

“L + A.S.T.R.A.L.O.R.A.C.L.E.S: 999777555333111000222444666888,” installation view at Five Car Garage (image courtesy the gallery)

Five Car Garage

Where: Email for address, Santa Monica, California
Hours: 12–4pm, Saturday, and by appointment (free admission)

Although it is actually located in a garage behind a house in Santa Monica, Five Car Garage is less punk DIY space, and more white-walled contemporary art gallery. It does still maintain a welcoming, affectless air, thanks to founder Emma Gray’s open enthusiasm for the artists in her tight program. They include Alison Blickle, Max Maslansky, and the metaphysical mystic known as L. Gray also founded the “Energetic Residency,” a meditation and art studio above the garage for performances, sound baths, and workshops.

The Fowler Museum at UCLA

Where: 308 Charles E. Young Drive North, Westwood, Los Angeles
Hours: 12pm–8pm, Wednesday; 12pm–5pm, Thursday through Sunday (free admission)

The Fowler may not be as well known as the Hammer, another UCLA-affiliated museum, but its collections and programs are just as formidable. Exhibitions feature artworks as well as ethnographic and archaeological objects from Africa, Asia, the Indigenous Americas, and the Pacific, presented as part of both colonial histories and today’s living, vibrant cultures.

The Getty Center (The J. Paul Getty Museum)

Where: 1200 Getty Center Drive, Bel-Air, Los Angeles
Hours: 10am–5:30pm, Sunday and Tuesday through Friday; 10am–9pm, Saturday (free admission)

The Getty Center is Los Angeles’s encyclopedic museum on the hill, featuring site-specific performances on its 24-acre campus and collections ranging from Renaissance drawings to Impressionist paintings to video art. Also on site is the Getty Research Institute’s vast holdings of rare books, prints, and photographs, which often circulate through the museum’s exhibitions.

Lari Pittman: Declaration of Independence, installation view, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, September
29, 2018–January 5, 2020 (photo by Jeff McLane)

Hammer Museum

Where: 10899 Wilshire Boulevard, Westwood, Los Angeles
Hours: 11am–8pm, Tuesday through Friday; 11am–5pm, Saturday through Sunday (free admission)

The Hammer Museum was founded in 1990, built around the Old Master and Impressionist collection of oilman and philanthropist Armand Hammer. Under the leadership of Ann Philbin, who became director in 1999, the museum has emerged as one of the city’s most exciting institutions, with challenging and progressive exhibition and event programs. Made in LA, the museum’s biennial showcase of local talent, is a who’s-who of emerging and under-recognized Angeleno artists. In keeping with its commitment to the power of art to “build a more just world,” the museum is, and always will be, free.

L.A. Louver

Where: 45 N. Venice Blvd, Venice, California
Hours: 10am–6pm, Tuesday through Saturday (free admission)

L.A. Louver’s origins date back over 40 years, to a time when the city’s gallery scene was limited to a small handful of spaces on the Westside. Since its founding in 1976, this Venice institution has proven its longevity with an intergenerational roster of artists including Ed and Nancy Kienholz, Alison Saar, and Gajin Fujita

Roberts Projects

Where: 5801 Washington Blvd., Culver City, California
Hours: 11am–6pm, Tuesday through Saturday (free admission)

Roberts & Tilton was founded 20 years ago by partners Bennett Roberts, Julie Roberts, and Jack Tilton in the 6150 Wilshire gallery building near LACMA, and have since moved into a former coffee-roasting factory in Culver City. After the death of Jack Tilton in 2017, they changed their name to Roberts Projects. Their roster of artists includes Kehinde Wiley, Daniel Joseph Martinez, Jeffrey Gibson, and Betye Saar. 

Skirball Cultural Center

Where: 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Brentwood, Los Angeles
Hours: 12–5pm, Tuesday through Friday; 10am–5pm, Saturday through Sunday ($12 – general admission; $9 – seniors (65 and up), full-time students with ID, and children over 12; $7 – children 2–12; free to all on Thursdays)

Nestled into the Brentwood hills just a short drive up the 405 from the Getty Center, the Skirball Cultural Center is dedicated to the celebration of Jewish culture, art, and history. Guided by the Jewish custom of welcoming the stranger, programming is aimed at sharing experiences and creating connections between different communities. 

Installation view, The Medea Insurrection: Radical Women Artists Behind the Iron Curtain (photo by Dany Naierman, courtesy the Wende Museum)

The Wende Museum

Where: 10808 Culver Boulevard, Culver City, California
Hours: 10am–9pm, Friday; 10am–5pm, Saturday and Sunday (free admission)

Nearly three decades since Francis Fukuyama declared the end of history with the fall of the Soviet Union, interest in socialism is resurgent in the United States. For those curious about past efforts to establish socialist states, the Wende Museum is dedicated to the Cold War–era art, cultures, and histories of former Soviet Bloc nations.

Central Los Angeles 

Commonwealth and Council

Where: 3006 W. 7th Street, Ste. 220, Koreatown, Los Angeles
Hours: 12–6pm, Wednesday through Saturday (free admission)

Commonwealth and Council was founded by the affable Young Chung in 2010 with the goal of “championing practices by women, queer, POC, and our ally artists.” Over the past decade, the gallery has showcased work by some of the most promising artists under this umbrella, including Beatriz Cortez, Rafa Esparza, Young Joon Kwak, Jennifer Moon, and EJ Hill. Housed on the second floor of a quaint residential building, it was joined a few years ago by young upstart Visitor Welcome Center down the hall. 

Craft Contemporary

Where: 5814 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire, Los Angeles
Hours: 11am–5pm, Tuesday through Friday; 11am–6pm, Saturday through Sunday; 6:30–9:30pm, first Thursday of every month ($9 – general admission; $7 – students, teachers, seniors 65+; donation-based admission every Sunday)

As its name implies, Craft Contemporary is one of the only institutions in the country dedicated to contemporary artists working in craft. Their definition of craft is an inclusive one, covering everything from ceramics, glass, and wood, to textiles, book design, and even shoe design. The museum began as the Egg & the Eye, a restaurant and commercial art gallery founded in 1965 by Edythe Wyle (grandmother of actor Noah Wyle) that showed folk art from around the world. When the gallery became a nonprofit museum in 1973, it changed its name to the Craft & Folk Art Museum. Another name change to Craft Contemporary followed in 2019, to highlight its commitment to art being made today as opposed to historical exhibitions. A rich series of hands-on workshops complements the exhibition program.

Installation view, Work in Progress: a solo show by Ashley Lukashevsky (image by Rikki Wright, courtesy Junior High)

Junior High

Where: 5656 Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood, Los Angeles
Hours: 12pm–6pm, Saturday and Sunday; event times vary, see programming calendar 

Junior High is a gallery, shop, and all-ages event space that also produces a quarterly magazine and weekly podcast — all of it driven by and dedicated to young artists, creatives, and activists. Exhibitions and events carve out a space for young women, people of color, and queer youth to showcase their talents and imagine a different kind of art world.

(photo by Ruben Diaz, courtesy the artist, Barbara Stauffacher Solomon, and LAXART)


Where: 7000 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood, Los Angeles
Hours: 11am–6pm, Tuesday through Saturday (free admission)

Nonprofit LAXART was founded in Culver City in 2005 by Lauri Firstenberg “as a platform for emerging and under-recognized talent.” A decade later they relocated to a former recording studio in Hollywood, and shortly thereafter Firstenberg stepped down as Executive Director. Her successor Hamzah Walker, formerly of Chicago’s Renaissance Society, and Deputy Director Catherine Taft, has continued the organization’s mission with a series of challenging exhibitions and events.

Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE)

Where: 6522 Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood, Los Angeles
Hours: 12pm–6pm, Wednesday through Sunday (free admission)

No history of Los Angeles’s alternative art spaces would be complete without mention of LACE. Over four decades, a scrappy artist-run organization managed to achieve both longevity and influence by fostering emerging artists and art forms during times when there was little to no institutional support. Today, LACE continues to spotlight new artistic and curatorial voices.

Architect Peter Zumthor’s current concept for the LACMA redesign (courtesy Building LACMA)

Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)

Where: 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Miracle Mile, Los Angeles
Hours: 11am–5pm, Monday, Tuesday, & Thursday; 11am–8pm, Friday; 11am–7pm, Saturday Through Sunday (LA County Residents with ID/those residing outside LA County: $20/$25 – General admission; $16/$21 – seniors 65+ & students 18+; free/$10 – teens 13-17; free after 3pm, Monday through Friday)

LACMA is the largest museum in the Western US, with a massive encyclopedic collection including more than 142,000 works from around the world. Much of the museum will be closed over the next few years as outdated buildings are demolished to make room for Swiss architect Peter Zumthor’s controversial amoeba-like redesign which will span Wilshire Boulevard, slated to open in 2024. The BCAM and Resnick Pavilion will remain open, however. Also open to the public are Michael Heizer’s “Levitated Mass” and Chris Burden’s “Urban Light,” which has come to define LA as much as the Hollywood sign or Bradbury Building. During the construction, LACMA will be loaning works to other museums in the area, and off-site exhibitions will take place at the Charles White Elementary School.

Installation view, works by Tiger Tateishi and Takuro Tamayama (image courtesy Nonaka-Hill)


Where: 720 North Highland Avenue, Hollywood, Los Angeles
Hours: 12pm–8pm, Tuesday through Saturday (free admission)

You might expect to find a dry cleaner or laundromat under the “Best Cleaners” sign tucked away in a strip mall on Highland and Melrose, and not a gallery focused on modern and contemporary Japanese art that’s rarely, if ever, shown in Los Angeles. Nonaka-Hill exhibits a wide range of work from across the Pacific, from photography to conceptual art to ceramics.

Trenton Doyle Hancock: An Ingenue’s Hues and How to Use Cutty Black Shoes, installation view, Shulamit Nazarian, Los Angeles, 2019 (image courtesy the artist and Shulamit Nazarian, Los Angeles)

Shulamit Nazarian

Where: 616 N. LaBrea Ave., Hancock Park, Los Angeles
Hours: 10am–6pm, Tuesday through Saturday (Free admission)

Architect-turned-gallerist Shulamit Nazarian hosted exhibitions in her home before opening her eponymous gallery in Venice in 2012. An Iranian Jew whose family left their home country in 1978 — moving first to Israel, then Los Angeles — Nazarian was committed to showing the work of Iranian, Jewish, and Israeli artists together, reflecting her background. In 2017, the gallery relocated to a 4,000-square-foot space on LaBrea Avenue just south of Melrose. The gallery’s program has broadened as well, including artists like Fay Ray and Trenton Doyle Hancock, alongside Jerusalem-born sculptor Reuven Israel and Iranian-American painter Amir Fallah.

Theaster Gates: Line Drawing for Shirt and Cloak installation view at Regen Projects (photo by Matt Sromberg)

Regen Projects

Where: 6750 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood, Los Angeles
Hours: 10am–6pm, Tuesday through Saturday (free admission)

Regen Projects is one of a handful of galleries that have been instrumental in defining the LA art scene over the past few decades. Founded in 1989 by Shaun Caley Regen and her late husband Stuart Regen, they have a knack for identifying and nurturing talent early on. They gave a then 24-year-old Matthew Barney his debut solo show in 1991, and were the first gallery to represent iconic LA photographer Catherine Opie. Their program now includes such influential artists as Glenn Ligon, Raymond Pettibon, Theaster Gates, Andrea Zittel, and Marilyn Minter. 

The Underground Museum

Where: 3508 West Washington Boulevard, Arlington Heights, Los Angeles
Hours: 12pm–7pm, Wednesday through Sunday (free admission)

Founded by the late painter Noah Davis, the Underground Museum is as much a community center as it is an exhibition space where visitors can peruse the book shop, join free guided meditations, or see artists and cultural organizers in conversation in the backyard garden. There’s always something going on at the Underground Museum, whether it’s a nighttime séance with Andy Warhol’s spirit or an afternoon lecture about prison abolition by Angela Davis.

Various Small Fires

Where: 6750 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood, Los Angeles
Hours: 10am–6pm, Tuesday through Saturday

Named after a 1964 artists book by Ed Ruscha, Various Small Fires exhibits a dynamic roster of artists including Anna Sew Hoy, Liz Magic Laser, Diedrick Brackens, and the Harrisons. Founded in 2012 by Esther Kim Varet, the gallery sits at the end of a long corridor leading from the sidewalk, and also doubles as a space for sound art. In 2019, VSF opened up a branch in Seoul, South Korea, where they have mounted shows of LA artists including Ruscha, Billy Al Bengston, Joshua Nathanson, and Math Bass.

Downtown and Eastside 

The Autry Museum of the American West (photo by Danielle Klebanow, image courtesy the Autry)

Autry Museum of the American West

Where: 234 Museum Drive, Griffith Park, Los Angeles
Hours: 10am–4pm, Tuesday through Friday; 10am–5pm, Saturday and Sunday ($14 adults, $10 students and seniors, $6 children ages 3–12, children under three free)

Established in 1988 by Singing Cowboy actor Gene Autry, the Autry takes on an expansive, as well as inclusive, view of the American West by focusing its exhibitions and programs on the histories and artworks of Indigenous peoples.

The Box

Where: 805 Traction Ave, Downtown, Los Angeles
12–6pm, Wednesday through Saturday (free admission)

Downtown gallery the Box splits its focus between historical exhibitions exploring artists or bodies of work that have been overlooked, and shows dedicated to emerging contemporary artists. To this end, they’ve mounted shows on the work of seminal feminist artists Barbara T. Smith and Judith Bernstein, choreographer Simone Forti, LA-based Naotaka Hiro, lovable weirdo Nathaniel Mellors, and art and advocacy collective, the Los Angeles Poverty Department. 

The Broad

Where: 221 S. Grand Ave, Downtown, Los Angeles
11am–5pm, Tuesday & Wednesday; 11am–8pm, Thursday & Friday; 10am–8pm, Saturday; 10am–6pm, Sunday (free admission, some exhibitions and events have additional charges)

The Broad was founded to showcase the collection of philanthropists Eli and Edythe Broad, who have had an outsized influence on the LA art scene, donating money and artwork to several local institutions before starting their own museum in 2015. Behind the perforated façade of the Diller, Scofidio + Renfro-designed building lies their 2,000-work collection, spanning the last 50 years. 

“The Revolting Lumpen! A Classical Opera Reboot” at Human Resources (photo by Matt Stromberg)

Human Resources

Where: 410 Cottage Home Street, Chinatown, Los Angeles
 12–6pm, Wednesday through Sunday (free admission unless otherwise specified)

Nonprofit, volunteer-run Chinatown art space Human Resources was founded in 2010 with the goal of supporting “performative and underexposed modes of expression.” They organize an ambitious program of visual art exhibitions, musical and dance performances, film screenings, and talks, sometimes all at the same time. Recent notable events include a performance from experimental composer Yann Novak, “Ecology of the Edge,” a group show addressing climate catastrophe, and “The Revolting Lumpen!,” a phantasmagorical opera reboot by collaborative duo Beck + Col that draws on Dada costumes and B-movie horror films.

Institute of Contemporary, Los Angeles (ICA LA)

Where: 1717 East 7th Street, Downtown, Los Angeles
Hours: 11am–7pm, Wednesday through Friday; 11am–6pm, Saturday and Sunday (free admission)

Since relocating from Santa Monica to Downtown LA in 2017, the ICA LA has carried out its mission as a non-collecting museum by offering strong educational programs and putting on frequently incisive, sometimes challenging shows by artists who are both established and early on in their careers.

Los Angeles Contemporary Archive (LACA)

Where: 709 N Hill Street, Suite 104-8, Chinatown, Los Angeles
Hours: 12–6pm, Friday through Saturday (free admission)

Los Angeles Contemporary Archive was founded in 2014 with the goal of collecting and cataloguing publications, ephemera, and materials produced by Los Angeles artists that would otherwise be left out of institutional collections. In keeping with their focus on the contemporary, their archive begins with the year of their founding. In addition to making their collection available to curators, artists, students, and writers, they also host exhibitions, talks, and performances in their Chinatown space.

Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery (LAMAG)

Where: 4800 Hollywood Boulevard, East Hollywood, Los Angeles
Hours: 10am–4pm, Thursday through Sunday (free admission)

Situated in Barnsdall Art Park and adjacent to the Frank Lloyd Wright–designed Hollyhock House, LAMAG focuses on works by emerging and underrepresented artists based in Los Angeles. Also next door is the Barnsdall Art Center which provides low-cost studio art classes for adults throughout the year.

LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes

Where: 501 North Main Street, Downtown, Los Angeles
Hours: 12pm–5pm, Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday; 10am–5pm, Friday through Sunday (free admission)

Located in the oldest section of Los Angeles, near the city’s historic Olvera Street, LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes is a museum and cultural center dedicated to the local and regional histories of Mexicans, Mexican Americans, and Latinx people.

Installation view, Cherisse Gray: Hello Baby, Terroir (image courtesy Murmurs)


Where: 1411 Newton Street, Downtown, Los Angeles
Hours: 11am–6pm, Tuesday through Friday; open Saturday during exhibitions and special events (free admission to gallery, cost of events vary)

Murmurs is a curatorial project space in the Warehouse District that functions as a gallery, shop, café, and venue for all kinds of events focused on emerging artists, designers, and creatives. The space adapts to whatever purpose its programming calls for, including fashion shows, self-care workshops, club nights, and performances.

Installation view of With Pleasure: Pattern and Decoration in American Art 1972–1985, October 27, 2019–May 11, 2020
at MOCA Grand Avenue (image courtesy the Museum of Contemporary Art, photo by Jeff Mclane)

Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA)

Where: 205 S. Grand Ave. (MOCA Grand) / 152 N. Central Ave. (MOCA Geffen), Downtown, Los Angeles
Hours (both locations): 11am–6pm, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday; 11am–8pm, Thursday; 11am–5pm, Saturday and Sunday (free admission)

Founded in 1979, the Museum of Contemporary Art is often referred to as the “Artists Museum” for the strong role artists have played in its founding and development. After the ups and downs of the past decade — which saw near financial ruin to the departure of both its head curator and director over the past two years — the museum appointed Klaus Biesenbach to the directorship in 2018. He is off to an auspicious start, deciding to recognize the MOCA employees’ recent unionization efforts, and doing away with admission costs, making the museum accessible to all.

Gregor Schuster, “In the Last Resort” (image courtesy NAVEL)


Where: 1611 South Hope Street, Downtown, Los Angeles
Hours: By appointment only, see programming calendar for open hours (cost of events vary)

NAVEL is an open-ended project space that fosters collective action and community-building, providing resources and infrastructure for art-making, publishing, research, and exchange. For artists and art workers looking for co-conspirators on a project, the NAVEL’s ASSEMBLIES program might offer possibilities and connections.

Kristy Luck: If I can imagine this light, then I can work all day, installation view at Odd Ark (photo by Ruben Diaz)

Odd Ark

Where: 7101 N. Figueroa St., Unit E, Eagle Rock, Los Angeles
Hours: 1–5pm, Friday; 12–5pm, Saturday & Sunday (free admission)

The brainchild of artist and musician Dani Tull, Odd Ark sits off a busy stretch of Figueroa Street next to a Brazilian jiu-jitsu school. The modest one-room space has showcased the work of predominantly LA-based contemporary artists including Brian Randolph, Alika Cooper, and Michael Decker. They have also hosted several Artist Swap Meets — part commercial endeavor, part community gathering — where dozens of artists and collectives offer affordable works of art, with 100% of sales going to the participants.

Installation view of solo exhibition by Franklin Williams, The Inimitable Professor Emeritus, 2019 (image courtesy the artist and Parker Gallery)

Parker Gallery

Where: 2441 Glendower Ave., Los Feliz, Los Angeles
Hours: 12–6pm, Thursday through Saturday (free admission)

Eschewing the pristine, white cube, Sam Parker chose a stately 1924 Tudor house in the Los Feliz hills to locate his gallery. Parker’s program is balanced between under-appreciated artists from the ’60s and ’70s, primarily from the Bay Area, like Franklin Williams and Maija Peeples-Bright, with a younger generation including Hannah Greely and Lukas Geronimas. 

(image courtesy Self Help Graphics)

Self Help Graphics & Art

Where: 1300 East 1st Street, Boyle Heights, Los Angeles
Hours: 10am–5pm, Tuesday through Friday; 10am–5pm, Monday by appointment only (free admission)

Self Help Graphics & Art emerged from political unrest in the 1970s, becoming a mainstay of the Chicano Art Movement in Los Angeles and training successive generations of artist-activists. To this day, the Boyle Heights–based community arts center supports artists, students, and community members in traditional and experimental forms of printmaking.

Vielmetter Los Angeles

Where: 1700 S. Santa Fe Ave., #101, Downtown, Los Angeles
Hours: 10am–6pm, Tuesday through Saturday (free admission)

Over the past 20 years, Suzanne Vielmetter has established herself as a discerning gallerist who has given artists including Edgar Arceneaux, Rodney McMillian, and Wangechi Mutu their first solo shows. Her program includes both mid-career and emerging artists, from LA and beyond, such as Liz Glynn, Mickalene Thomas, and Mary Kelly. In 2019, after nearly a decade in Culver City, she relocated to a 24,000-square-foot space in a former tire factory downtown. By the year’s end, three other galleries had followed suit, reinforcing her reputation as a prescient trendsetter.

Installation view, Ahree Lee, Pattern : Code (photo by Gilda Davidian, image courtesy Women’s Center for Creative Work)

Women’s Center for Creative Work (WCCW)

Where: 2425 Glover Place, Elysian Valley, Los Angeles
Hours: 10am–6pm, Monday through Friday (free admission to the center, cost of events vary)

WCCW provides workspace, resources, and educational opportunities for all kinds of creative practices, particularly those led by or centering women, people of color, and nonbinary people. Artist residencies, skill-sharing workshops, and other supportive services help anchor this space for creative experimentation and community building. WCCW will be relocating soon, so stay tuned for their new address. 

South Los Angeles

Installation view, Stephen Towns: Rumination and a Reckoning (photo by Joshua White, courtesy Art + Practice)

Art + Practice

Where: 3401 West 43rd Place, Leimert Park, Los Angeles
Hours: 12pm–6pm, Monday through Saturday (free admission)

Leimert Park has a long history of storied institutions and Black-owned businesses that contribute to its reputation as one of the city’s centers for African American arts and culture. Co-founded by artist Mark Bradford, Art + Practice serves as both an exhibition space for contemporary art and a social services provider for foster youth.

California African American Museum (CAAM)

Where: 600 State Drive, Exposition Park, Los Angeles
Hours: 10am–5pm, Tuesday through Saturday; 11am–5pm, Sunday (free admission)

With strong curation and a permanent collection of African and African diasporic art that’s the largest of its kind on the west coast, CAAM places Black Americans at the forefront of local, regional and national histories as well as modern and contemporary art.

Master printer Rodrigo Montoya (image courtesy Mixografia)


Where: 1419 East Adams Boulevard, Central-Alameda, Los Angeles
Hours: 10am–5pm, Tuesday through Friday; 11am–6pm, Saturday; or by appointment (free admission)

A multi-generational printmaking studio founded by the Remba family in 1984, Mixografia traces its history back to Mexico City, where its precursor, the Taller de Gráfica Mexicana, innovated a technique to produce three-dimensional, high-relief prints in collaboration with artist Rufino Tamayo. With a half-century of expertise, Mixografia became highly sought-after by American artists experimenting with printmaking, including the likes of Helen Frankenthaler and Ed Ruscha.


Installation view, Calafia: Manifesting the Terresterial Paradise (image courtesy Armory Center for the Arts, photo by Ian Byers-Gamber)

Armory Center for the Arts

Where: 145 N. Raymond Ave., Pasadena, California
Hours: 12–5pm, Wednesday through Monday (Free admission)

The mission of Pasadena’s Armory Center for the Arts is balanced between mounting exhibitions of contemporary art and a commitment to community arts education through a robust program of classes and workshops. Previous shows include the latest edition of the Mexicali Biennial, a show exploring queer Latinx platform Club SCUM, and a survey of the late painter and filmmaker Sara Kathryn Arledge. 

Norton Simon Museum

Where: 411 W. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, California
Hours: 12–5pm, Sunday & Monday, Wednesday & Thursday; 11am–8pm, Friday & Saturday ($15 – general admission; $12 – seniors 62+; free children 18 and under, students with ID, active military with ID; free admission first Friday of every month, 5–8pm)

With its roots going back nearly a century, the Norton Simon Museum is a gem of a museum with a collection of 12,000 objects ranging from ancient Indian sculpture, paintings by Rembrandt and Raphael, to masterworks of Impressionism and German Expressionism. The galleries are complemented by a bucolic sculpture garden inspired by Monet’s gardens at Giverny, featuring traditional Asian sculpture and modern works by Henry Moore, Robert Morris, and Barbara Hepworth. 

San Gabriel Valley

Installation view, I Wish to Communicate with You: Corita Kent & Matt Keegan (photo courtesy POTTS)

The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens

Where: 1151 Oxford Rd, San Marino, California
Hours: 10am–5pm, open every day except Tuesday (tickets $13–29); you can reserve a free ticket on the first Thursday of the month 

Nestled in the gorgeous gardens of the Huntington are various galleries with robust programming. Exhibitions range from contemporary art shows to historical, archival projects. You’ll likely also stumble into some installations and sculptures in the gardens.


Where: 2130 Valley Boulevard, Alhambra, California
Hours: 1pm–6pm, Saturday and Sunday, or by appointment (free admission)

The Potts family ran a plumbing supply store for 76 years before brothers Tom, Joe, and Rick Potts — artists who co-founded the experimental noise collective Los Angeles Free Music Society in 1973 — closed the business in 2015 and rented out their family-owned Alhambra storefront to a group of friends to run an alternative art space featuring exhibitions, readings, screenings, and talks.

Vincent Price Art Museum

Where: 1301 Avenida Cesar Chavez, Monterey Park, California (East Los Angeles College)
Hours: 12pm–4pm, Tuesday through Saturday, except 12pm–7pm, Thursday (free admission)

Bolstered by resources from LACMA and its own private collection of pre-Colombian and contemporary artworks, the Vincent Price Art Museum provides culturally responsive exhibitions and programming for the communities of East Los Angeles and the San Gabriel Valley.

Van Nuys

Performance by artist Cola Boyy (photo by Kevin Novales, courtesy Naturál)


Where: 15168 Raymer Street, Van Nuys, California
Hours: Events and hours announced on Instagram

Naturál is a gallery and performance space that connects artists throughout the San Fernando Valley (SFV), providing an outlet for contemporary art and music in a region more known for its far-flung bedroom communities than its active arts scenes. In addition to art exhibitions and live performances, the space has organized and hosted the SFV Art Bookfair, with plans to hold artist residencies and a series of film screenings.


Installation view, Barrio Logos: Displacement and Vanishing Iconography (image courtesy of Residency)

Residency Art Gallery

Where: 310 East Queen Street, Inglewood, California
Hours: 12pm–6pm, Friday and Saturday, or by appointment (free admission)

Communities of artists have lived and worked in Inglewood long before its current development and real estate boom. Founded by Inglewood native Rick Garzon, Residency shows work by artists from and in conversation with communities of color.

Long Beach

The Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA), Long Beach, California (photo courtesy the museum)

Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA)

Where: 628 Alamitos Ave, Long Beach, California
Hours: 11am–5pm, Wednesday & Friday through Sunday; 11am–9pm, Thursday ($10 – general admission; $7 – seniors 65+, students with ID; free for children under 12; free admission every Sunday and fourth Thursday of every month, 5–9pm)

Founded in 1996, the Museum of Latin American Art bills itself as the only US museum dedicated to modern and contemporary Latin American and Latino Art. Until recently, they were focused exclusively on Latin American artists from outside the US, a surprising omission given that the Latinos make up over 50% of the population of Los Angeles County. In 2018, they held their first exhibition of a Latina artist with a solo show of recent work by Judithe Hernández. 

Abe is a writer based in Los Angeles.

Matt Stromberg is a freelance visual arts writer based in Los Angeles. In addition to Hyperallergic, he has contributed to the Los Angeles Times, CARLA, Apollo, ARTNews, and other publications.