April 28, 2013 |
Los Angeles' oldest museum site, the Natural History Museum in Exposition Park, is celebrating its centennial this year with the debut of a new entrance halland outdoor nature center, capping a full makeover that's already yielded new halls for dinosaurs and mammals, and the return of the museum's core domed 1913 building to its original glory. But will there be any reason for festivities surrounding next year's centennial of the Southwest Museum building in Mount Washington? For the past ten years, the castle-like, hilltop structure has been like a very old aunt whose care is a strain on the family, with different factions fighting over what should be done, and who should pay. Legally, the Southwest is the obligation of the Autry National Center of the American West.
June 21, 2012 |
Daniel Finley, the president and chief executive of the Autry National Museum, has abruptly stepped down from the institution after just two years on the job. The Autry said Thursday that it had named W. Richard West Jr. as its new president and CEO. West's appointment will take effect in the fall of 2012, with an exact date to be announced later, according to a spokeswoman for the Autry. Finley took the top position at the Autry in 2010, coming from the Milwaukee Public Museum. He has been succeeded on an interim basis by Luke Swetland, the museum's head of exhibitions and operations, according to the Autry spokeswoman.
June 6, 2012 |
One of Los Angeles' longest-running and most adversarial cultural disputes - over the future of the Southwest Museum in Mount Washington, and its prized collection of Native American artifacts - has a chance of shifting to a less contentious footing. Supporters of the Southwest Museum have been trying for years to force its stepparent, the Autry National Center of the American West, to revive the castle-like, 98-year-old site as a vibrant showcase for the collection. Meanwhile, they have tried to block the Autry from shifting Native American exhibits to the Autry Museum in Griffith Park.
May 30, 2012 |
This Sunday's annual Lummis Day festival, celebrating the history and culture of northeast L.A., calls to mind a time 100 years ago when the city was extremely pregnant with its first major, home-grown cultural institutions, but they had not yet quite been born. In its edition of June 16, 1912, the Los Angeles Times bannered the news that Charles F. Lummis and fellow members of the Southwest Society had paid $50,000 to secure a 17-acre property atop a bluff in Mount Washington for a museum to house Lummis' extraordinary collection of Native American artifacts.
May 13, 2012 |
The pace is picking up on the massive conservation project in process at the Southwest Museum in Mount Washington. The end is almost in sight: Only 36,000 objects to go! In 2003, when the poverty-stricken institution merged with the more affluent Museum of the American West under the umbrella of the Autry National Center in Griffith Park, the first priority was to save the Southwest's collection of about 250,000 Native American artworks and artifacts. Second only to the holdings of the National Museum of the American Indian inWashington, D.C., the collection had been inadequately housed for decades and further damaged by earthquakes, water and insects.
April 28, 2012 |
SOUTHWEST MUSEUM / ELDRED STAIRS You don't have to fight the crowds in Santa Monica Canyon to get a great stairway workout. You can hike the historic wooden Eldred stairs in Highland Park and get great city and mountain views in the bargain. Duration: One hour Distance: 2.6 miles Difficulty: 3 on a 1-5 scale Transportation: Gold Line, Southwest Museum Station; Metro bus No. 81 1. Start from Figueroa Street and Woodside Drive. Climb the stairs to the elevated sidewalk, and pass Casa de Adobe and some fine Craftsman homes.