THE BROAD – PRONOUNCED “BRODE,” LONG “O”

The BroadWhen I think of great museums I think NYC, London, Paris, even Rome sometimes. But who thinks of Los Angeles? Well, I don’t. Furthermore, when it comes to free museums, I wouldn’t place Los Angeles into that category either.

Until The Broad opened. September 20, 2015.

Pronounced “Brode” – long “o”.

Eli Broad. Ever since I moved to Los Angeles I’ve noticed this name dangling down the backdrop of all things L.A.

Los Angeles Schools: Can you help us out a little?

Broad: How much do you need?

Los Angeles Arts: We need a hand out. You can be on The Board if you want.

Broad: How much do you need?

Los Angeles: Can you build a museum, store your art, sustain the museum and let everyone in for free?

Broad: Sure, how much do you need?

Well, I don’t think it went quite like that. But you get the idea.

Broad, who was born in New York but grew up and started his career in Detroit, Michigan, moved to Los Angeles in 1963 where he settled and made the city his home. He is a homebuilder, author, philanthropist, and dabbled in insurance a little bit. Broad places within the top 200 wealthiest people in the world, according to Forbes. He and his wife, Edythe, have supported the arts and education in Los Angeles for years. They are true representatives of generosity.

So don’t get the name wrong. The Broad. Long “o.”

Broad sign

I am intent on visiting this museum, and soon. Reservations are needed to guarantee entrance, but most dates and times are booked up through 2015. However, a friend of mine tells me visitors without reservations may wait in the Stand By line in case, by chance, there are any “no shows.” She stood in the Stand By line. She got in. “No problem,” she said.

So I think that if it’s “no problem,” I just may be able to persuade my mother to go. And I do. She says “yes.” She wants to see Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup Cans.

We take a ride on the Metro Red Line, get off at Civic Center Station, walk up the hill through Grand Park, take a left at Disney Hall and we’re at The Broad – long “o”. By 11 o’clock, we’re standing in line.

If you buy into the rumors that Angelenos are flaky, this could prove the rumor true. According to a Broad staffer, on average, up until this date, only half the people who have reserved tickets have shown up. This is to our benefit because 100 people are no-shows for the 11:30 time. We’re able to get in. No problem.

When we walk in, we’re greeted by a giant-sized stack of white dishes and what seems to be the insides of a cave surround us. The insides of the “cave” look like grey velvet. But they’re not.

Broad plates

We head over to sign up for a 45 second experience in Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirrored Room. We get a 2 pm reservation then head into the first-floor galleries.

One gallery holds The Skulls and more works from Takashi Murakami.

Broad skulls 2

Mom: I wonder. Where are the Warhol Soup Cans?

We duck behind a curtain into another gallery only to be enveloped by an incredible musical experience put together by Icelander Ragnar Kjartansson.

Mom: I could’ve sat in there for hours! But, where are the Warhol Soup Cans?

As we continue through the galleries, we study the works of Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, and Ed Ruscha.

Mom: After lunch let’s not forget the Warhol Soup Cans.

Following lunch, we head straight up to the third-floor galleries to take a quick peek before our Infinity Mirror Room experience.

We marvel at the works of Jeff Koons and Christopher Wool.

broad koons wool

Mom: Where are those Warhol Soup Cans?

Broad furniture

We move into another gallery and Mom moves everywhere under and around Robert Therrien’s giant-sized table and chairs.

Mom: Where are the Warhol Soup Cans?

We head back down to the Infinity Mirrored Room. It’s almost 2.

broad infinity

“That was cool!” says Mom. “Now, let’s go find Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup Cans.”

We head back up to the third-floor galleries and traipse through Cindy Sherman, Roy Lichtenstein and Jeff Koons’ basketballs floating in water.

broad koons bballs

Finally, we find Andy Warhol. The very last gallery to see.

As I begin working my way around the room, Mom moves rapidly across the gallery. Thinking she was right there next to me, I notice she’s not and start looking around for her. I find her right next to those Cans. As I approach her, I notice something odd. I can’t put my finger on it quite yet.

But then I realize…

Broad campbells soup

My Mom and those Campbell’s Soup Cans – from head to toe – they match.

For more information on The Broad go to thebroad.org

To learn more about Eli and Edythe Broad and The Broad Foundation, go to broadfoundation.org

Please note that no coordination was made between my Mother’s outfit and the Campbell’s Soup Cans

11 thoughts on “THE BROAD – PRONOUNCED “BRODE,” LONG “O”

  1. The Broad (long o) is on my list, as well. The sad thing is, you’re right. People do not think of the Los Angeles area as a mecca for great art and we have quite a few wonderful museums in the area, including two sites for the Getty, which is also free except for the parking. And there’s also the Richard Riordan Central Library, not far from the Broad at Fifth and Flower. They do some wonderful exhibits there, plus the fabulous period and contemporary art there. And MOMA and LACMA. Heading a little further north, and there are even more art museums in Pasadena, including the Norton Simon and The Huntington Library. Those can be pricey, but there are free days for all of them and Art Night every spring and fall in Pasadena.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for this great post. I just helped readers tour the LACMA and the Levitating Mass. I want to get to the Broad and you have made me want it even more. Thanks.

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    1. I visited just part of LACMA in free Tuesday last week…still have way more to see. Try to go to the Broad before the infinity mirrored room is gone…and get your reservation as soon as you get into the museum.

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    1. Thanks Rebecca! DTLA is a favorite area of mine. I’m glad you find the Metro easy…i’m a big advocator for using it. 2nd to walking, of course. As for my mom? Well…she swears there was no coordination. 😉

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