Referred to as the Hammer Museum, this museum was opened in 1990. The building was designed by architect Edward Larrabee Barnes, in part in order to house Dr. Armand Hammer's personal collection and make it available to the public. Following Dr. Hammer's death, the museum partnered with the neighboring UCLA to move the staff and collections of the Wight Gallery to the new building. One of the main commitments of the museum is promoting cultural understanding. The museum also values displaying the works of those artists who are not well-represented in the art world, as well as interpreting art of the past and the present. In addition to the main museum and the Franklin D. Murphy Sculpture Garden, the Hammer also boasts a 295-seat cinematheque named the Billy Wilder Theater. The Museum offers a program for children each Sunday.
Plan Your Trip
The Hammer Museum is located in Los Angeles at 10899 Wilshire Boulevard, at the northeast corner of Westwood and Wilshire Boulevards. This is 3 blocks east of the Wilshire Boulevard exit off of the 405 freeway.
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The Hammer Museum is closed on Mondays. On Tues-Wed, and Fri-Sat, the museum is open 11am to 7pm. On Thursdays, they are open 11am to 9pm. Sundays, the museum is open 11am to 5pm. Admission is $7 for adults. Students, senior citizens, and Alumni Association members with valid ID pay $5. Children 17 and under are admitted for free when accompanied by an adult. Admission is free on Thursdays.
The Museum's Collection
The Hammer has a number of collections that show different artistic styles.
The Armand Hammer Collection is Dr. Armand Hammer's first personal collection. Dr. Hammer was a business tycoon and his personal collection was collected in travels around the world with the assistance of his brother Victor who had studied art history at Princeton University. The collection includes works of Edgar Degas, Paul Cézanne, Vincent van Gogh, and Gustave Moreau, along with a variety of works by American artists of the 18th to 20th century. There are also several paintings by old European masters.
The Hammer Daumier Collection is a collection of works by French caricaturist Honoré Daumier as well as works of his peers. The works, which include prints, paintings, wood engravings, drawings and even sculptures paint a picture of the political atmosphere in France in the 19th century.
The Hammer Contemporary Collection, as its name suggests, showcases contemporary art. This collection has a focus on local artists from Southern California, but also showcases the works of contemporary artists from around the United States and the world. In building the collection, every attempt is made to showcase several pieces from each artist to give a better picture of the artist as a whole.
The Grunwald Center can be visited by appointment only. The collection, which was started with a substantial donation of prints and drawings by Fred Grunwald now contains over 45,000 pieces of art, including photographs, drawings, prints, and books dating from the time of the Renaissance up to the present.
The Murphy Sculpture Garden originally belonged to UCLA, and is now under the management of the Hammer Museum. The garden is over five acres of beautiful nature interspersed with over seventy sculptures of artists such as Auguste Rodin, Barbara Hepworth, Jacques Lipchitz, Henry Moore, Isamu Noguchi, Jean Arp, Deborah Butterfield, Henri Matisse, Sorel Etrog and Alexander Calder. There is also an installation of Robert Graham work at the Rolfe Courtyard, which is separate from the Murphy Sculpture Garden. Visitors can tour the gardens alone or can schedule a guided tour by calling or emailing in advance.