Museums open after yearlong shutdown

| April 1, 2021 | 0 Comments

LA BREA TAR PITS, in Hancock Park, will open Thurs., April 8.
Photo by Gina Cholick. Courtesy of NHMLAC

After a year of lockdown due to the pandemic, all of the four major museums along Miracle Mile’s Museum Row have — or will soon — open, with safety protocols in place.

The first among them is the Petersen Automotive Museum, 6060 Wilshire Blvd., which had its rollout last month. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) is set to open April 1, and the La Brea Tar Pits Museum follows on April 8.

At the Petersen Museum, three exhibits that were launched during the pandemic are on view: “Supercars: A Century of Spectacle and Speed,” “Extreme Conditions” and “Redefining Performance,” featuring Porsche’s most innovative road and race vehicles.

In addition, “The Aesthetic of Motoring: 90 Years of Pininfarina” debuted at the Petersen March 25, featuring four vehicles by the storied Italian car design firm and coachbuilder.

As a thank-you for their service during the pandemic, the Petersen is offering free admission to health care workers and first responders and up to three family members through 2021.

All tickets must be pre-purchased, including those for health care personnel and first responders, who also need to provide a physical copy of professional verification at museum check-in. Visit

All of the museums follow health and safety protocols set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the state and the county to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Staff members and visitors are required to wear face coverings, capacity is limited, and social distancing is enforced with designated navigation paths within the exhibitions.


LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Blvd.,  opens Thurs., April 1 with six new exhibits.

They are: “Yoshitomo Nara,” “Cauleen Smith: Give It Or Leave It,” “NOT I: Throwing Voices (1500 BCE – 2020 CE),” “Bill Viola: Slowly Turning Narrative,” “Vera Lutter: Museum in the Camera” and “View From Here: Recent Acquisitions.” Visit

La Brea Tar Pits

“Mammoths and Mastodons” will be on view at the La Brea Tar Pits, 5801 Wilshire Blvd., when it reopens on Thurs., April 8.

The exhibit explores the world of these Ice Age animals, whose fossils have been found at the Tar Pits and at sites around the world.

The museum will be open Thursdays through Sundays with an expanded schedule in the coming months. Visit to reserve your timed ticket entry.

Craft Contemporary is set for a Sun., May 9 reopening. Check its website in coming weeks for more information. Visit

By Suzan Filipek

ITALIAN car exhibit debuted at the opening March 25.

Exhilaration is on display at Petersen

At about the same time I first learned that the museums were reopening, I received an invitation to review the “Supercars: A Century of Spectacle and Speed” show at the Petersen Automotive Museum. I realized that I hadn’t been out in public for over a year. I thought about the opportunity and learned that the Petersen, along with other museums along Museum Row, were taking the strictest safety precautions prescribed by Los Angeles County and CDC  guidelines. When I arrived, a security officer signed me in, and he scanned my body temperature.

It flashed green, the security officer signaled a normal reading, and I was off to see the “Supercars” and special exhibits. As I entered the elevator, I passed signs requesting masks and social distancing. When the doors opened, a colorful array of the most dreamed-about cars sparkled in the exhibit hall.

These aggressive performers are striking. My heart pumped, and the adrenalin rose just seeing these automobile treasures, sculptures shaped by speed, wind and the road. With these beauties, the exhilaration begins before you get behind the wheel, and accelerates to stupendous when the cars’ unbelievable performance kicks in.

On display are some historical dream machines and modern speedsters built with gold, titanium, carbon fiber and the synthetic Kevlar, a heat-resistant and strong synthetic fiber, for additional performance refinement.

Two hundred-plus mph is common on these dream rigs, which hug the ground and stand waist high. The favorite Supercar on my wish list is the 1993 Vector W8, which clocks at 242 mph with a formidable turbocharged V8 sporting 625 horsepower. It looks like it’s moving while parked in its exhibit spot.

In addition to the new “Supercars” exhibit, the museum debuted an exhibit celebrating Italian design firm and coachbuilder Pininfarina, “The Aesthetic of Motoring: 90 Years of Pininfarina.” You will also find the Hollywood Dream Machines on the first floor featuring the legendary DeLorean time machine from “Back to the Future” and a mock-up transport from “Star Wars.”

By Steven Rosenthal



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Category: Entertainment

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