Get us in your inbox


5 L.A. art exhibitions to look forward to in 2019

Michael Juliano
Written by
Michael Juliano

A wave of large-scale spectacle shows swept through L.A.’s art galleries and museums this past year via the likes of “Beyond the Streets,” a trio of Ai Weiwei shows, an Invader retrospective, the Hammer’s “Made in L.A.” biennial and the addition of a second Infinity Room to the Broad’s permanent collection.

But we think 2019 is shaping up to be just as exciting thanks to a slate of globe-spanning, socially-minded and visually fantastic exhibitions. Here are the top five things to look forward to among L.A.’s art institutions in the coming year, including a soon(ish)-to-open Miracle Mile museum and a biennial that criss-crosses the desert near Palm Springs.

Desert X
Coachella Valley, Feb 29–Apr 21

The desert-spanning biennial premieres site-specific works from over 15 artists. For its second iteration (you probably remember the first for Doug Aitken’s mirrored house), Desert X has added more public programming, film projects, process-driven works and an expansion toward the Salton Sea.

“Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power 1963–1983”
The Broad, Mar 23–Sept 1

This exhibition, which originated at London’s Tate Modern, flips the idea of “black art” on its head, tracing an under looked 20-year period of creative innovation among African-American artists.

“Contact High: A Visual History of Hip-Hop”
Annenberg Space for Photography, Apr 26–Sept 8

Celebrate the photographers responsible for helping to define hip-hop’s visual identity with this display of unedited contact sheets from photo shoots with the likes of the Notorious B.I.G., Tupac, Salt-N-Pepa, Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, Kanye West and more.

Julie Mehretu, Conjured Parts (eye), Ferguson
Photograph: Courtesy the Broad Art Foundation/Julie Mehretu/Cathy Carver

“Julie Mehretu”
LACMA, Nov 3–May 17

This co-presentation with New York’s Whitney Museum of American Art takes a mid-career look at the Ethiopian-American artist’s striking large-scale abstractions, with 30 paintings and 32 works on paper. 

“Hayao Miyazaki”
Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, late 2019

The long-awaited Academy Museum hasn’t nailed down an opening date yet, but the Miracle Mile institution has announced its inaugural exhibition: a Hayao Miyazaki retrospective. The still-untitled exhibition will delve into 11 films from the Studio Ghibli animator and director through projections, spatial installations, concept sketches, storyboards, layouts and production cels (and, of course, exclusive merch).

You may also like
You may also like