Merger of 2 of LA's largest museums proposed
LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is proposing a merger with the city's financially troubled Museum of Contemporary Art, a move officials say could ensure MOCA's continued existence while transforming LA into a world-class hub for contemporary art.
The Los Angeles County museum's director, Michael Govan, says the possibility of a merger was first raised by MOCA officials and that LACMA has responded with a formal proposal.
The Los Angeles Times, which first reported the proposal Thursday, said it was made in a Feb. 24 letter delivered to the leaders of MOCA's board and contains a promise to raise $100 million to benefit the museum.
A MOCA official did not immediately respond to a message for comment.
The museum, with two downtown campuses, was in danger of going under five years ago when billionaire financier Eli Broad bailed it out with $30 million.
"Like so many others in the art world, we appreciate the impact MOCA has had, both on Los Angeles and on the world stage," Govan and LACMA director Wallis Annenberg said in a statement. "Our chief desire is to see MOCA's program continue and to serve the many artists and other Angelenos, for whom MOCA means so much."
The museum's downtown campus has hosted popular exhibitions on Andy Warhol, prominent American comic book artists and many others over the years. Its nearby Geffen Contemporary campus was host to a popular 2011 exhibition of graffiti art that featured the works of Banksy, Shepard Fairey, Chaz Bojorquez and others.