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Cheap fun in artsy L.A.

A weekend of free concerts and exploring the Los Angeles Museum of Art.

Left to right: jazz performance at the LACMA; interactive art exhibit; orchid at the downtown Los Angeles Flower Market.
Left to right: jazz performance at the LACMA; interactive art exhibit; orchid at the downtown Los Angeles Flower Market.

Zip, chug, or plod your way up the 405 for a long weekend clustered around LACMA, the Los Angeles Museum of Art.

Friday

Sneak out of work early on a Friday, or take the day off entirely, to get to the mid-Wilshire district by mid-afternoon. Get yourself a loaf or three of challah at the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf before they sell out. Then with challah and assorted liquids in hand, head to the LACMA for a free jazz concert on the patio amidst the Chris Burden Urban Lights sculpture. The jazz series features some of the finest musicians this side of heaven – and appropriately-sized crowds. Claim your seat early.

While waiting for the performance, stroll through the museum’s outdoor exhibits, including Alexander Calder’s Hello Girls and Michael Heizer’s Levitated Mass.

Apres-concert, walk over to The Grove for dinner. This shopping center comes alive at dinner-time with lots of small ethnic restaurants, including something that San Diego doesn’t have: Indonesian food. For a caffeinated nightcap, head to Swingers, where Hollywood stars reportedly go for late-night deep-fried inspiration.

Saturday

Need a break from the museum? The enormous Los Angeles flower market in downtown Los Angeles really blossoms early on a Saturday morning. Buy yourself an otherworldly potted orchid and a late breakfast.

Latin Sounds take the stage back at LACMA of a late Saturday afternoon. This series has hosted such luminaries at Chuchito Valdes, a pianist whose enthusiastic thumping actually has the grand piano bouncing on the stage. Did I mention that it’s free?

Sunday

Where would you want to be on a Sunday but in the museum, perusing the permanent or special exhibitions? Check out Richard Serra’s Band, an immense, ribbon-like steel sculpture that evokes the slot canyons of the desert southwest. Check out Pablo Picasso’s Weeping Woman with Handkerchief. Count the calla lilies on the Diego Riveras. Hello, Roy Lichtenstein, give me the Cold Shoulder.

And since you don’t want to get home too early, take in some tunes at the Sunday chamber concert series, in LACMA’s lovely Bing Theater. Guess what? It’s free.

Although you can’t go wrong, maybe next year you’ll want to review the concert schedule before scheduling your LACMA weekend. This never gets old.

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Los Angeles County Museum of Art

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Left to right: jazz performance at the LACMA; interactive art exhibit; orchid at the downtown Los Angeles Flower Market.
Left to right: jazz performance at the LACMA; interactive art exhibit; orchid at the downtown Los Angeles Flower Market.

Zip, chug, or plod your way up the 405 for a long weekend clustered around LACMA, the Los Angeles Museum of Art.

Friday

Sneak out of work early on a Friday, or take the day off entirely, to get to the mid-Wilshire district by mid-afternoon. Get yourself a loaf or three of challah at the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf before they sell out. Then with challah and assorted liquids in hand, head to the LACMA for a free jazz concert on the patio amidst the Chris Burden Urban Lights sculpture. The jazz series features some of the finest musicians this side of heaven – and appropriately-sized crowds. Claim your seat early.

While waiting for the performance, stroll through the museum’s outdoor exhibits, including Alexander Calder’s Hello Girls and Michael Heizer’s Levitated Mass.

Apres-concert, walk over to The Grove for dinner. This shopping center comes alive at dinner-time with lots of small ethnic restaurants, including something that San Diego doesn’t have: Indonesian food. For a caffeinated nightcap, head to Swingers, where Hollywood stars reportedly go for late-night deep-fried inspiration.

Saturday

Need a break from the museum? The enormous Los Angeles flower market in downtown Los Angeles really blossoms early on a Saturday morning. Buy yourself an otherworldly potted orchid and a late breakfast.

Latin Sounds take the stage back at LACMA of a late Saturday afternoon. This series has hosted such luminaries at Chuchito Valdes, a pianist whose enthusiastic thumping actually has the grand piano bouncing on the stage. Did I mention that it’s free?

Sunday

Where would you want to be on a Sunday but in the museum, perusing the permanent or special exhibitions? Check out Richard Serra’s Band, an immense, ribbon-like steel sculpture that evokes the slot canyons of the desert southwest. Check out Pablo Picasso’s Weeping Woman with Handkerchief. Count the calla lilies on the Diego Riveras. Hello, Roy Lichtenstein, give me the Cold Shoulder.

And since you don’t want to get home too early, take in some tunes at the Sunday chamber concert series, in LACMA’s lovely Bing Theater. Guess what? It’s free.

Although you can’t go wrong, maybe next year you’ll want to review the concert schedule before scheduling your LACMA weekend. This never gets old.

Map

Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Los Angeles County Museum of Art
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Comments
1

Levitated Mass was a huge disappointment. I saw it in 2013. The giant rock doesn't look like it levitates at all. You walk down a long ramp, and look up at the rock. That's it. This was a huge waste of money, and what I'd call "stupid art."

April 30, 2015

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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