Is It Any Good?

The history of Latin American Art at LACMA.

You would think that a city like Los Angeles would have a permanent collection of Mexican Art on display.

Oh, that’s right. We do…for a little while.

One of the things I love about LACMA is that they have a little bit of everything, and that little bit of everything has got it’s own little homes here and there: the Pavilion for Japanese Art, the Art of the Americas Building, etc.

Problem is, as big as LACMA has gotten is that it’s still running out of room. That’s why Exhibits like the Treasures of the Ming Dynasty take up one only room. One day LACMA will hopefully expand (again), but in the meantime…

The Latin American Art: Ancient to Contemporary is set up perfectly. It starts at the beginning of Mayan History and brings it up to our time. The good news is that these pieces are all part of the permanent collection. Apparently at one point in 2006, LACMA kinda lacked in this department:

From LACMA’s Unframed Blog:

Few people know that as recent as 2006, there was only one significant work from Spanish America in the collection—a striking chalice gifted by William Randolph Hearst. Since then, we have acquired more than 50 important works in this area, converting the museum into one of the principal repositories of Spanish colonial art in the United States.

Among the highlights are paintings by renowned masters from Mexico and elsewhere in the viceroyalties, including Juan Rodríguez Juárez (1675–1728), Luis Berrueco (active in the 18th century), Miguel Cabrera (c. 1715–1768), Juan Patricio Morlete Ruiz (1713–1781), and José de Páez (1720–c. 1801). These works brilliantly attest to the formation of local schools of painting and the invention of new iconographies.

So needless to say, LACMA’s improved things just a little.

Your entryway into the history of Latin American Art.

Your entryway into the history of Latin American Art.

There are a number of Diego Riveras on display, and one of two Frida Kalho’s as well. They are probably the heart of Mexico’s Artistic history, but by no means the only ones that mattered. So here, you’ll get to see a little bit of everyone: Spanish Colonial, craftwork and ancient artifacts.

Too bad it’s only collected here together until October.


IMPORTANT SAFETY TIP, PEOPLE: f you go through the proper entrance (the one furthest from the Elevators) you’ll start at the beginning of f Latin American history, starting from the stone age on up to Modernism that’ll make your head hurt.

Okay, it makes my head hurt.

Go through the other entrance, closest to the Elevators you’ll actually be starting at the modern part of history, and thus going through the exhibit backwards.


Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)
5905 Wilshire Boulevard
Los Angeles, California 90036
(323) 857-6000

Mon-Tue, Thu: 12–8pm
Wed: Closed
Fri: 12–9pm
Sat-Sun: 11am–8pm