Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art Hits Rock Bottom, Eli Broad Steps In to Help Save the Day

On the other side of the country, another museum wasn’t losing a director but was also having a very busy, scrambling weekend. First, Los Angeles’ Museum of Contemporary Art announced that most of their endowments had all but dried up, leaving them with hardly any operating budget and many concerns over what to do next to keep the museum afloat. Later, California’s attorney general, Edmund Brown Jr., decided that this sudden loss of finances was something worth investigating. Why, we’re not entirely sure, but we’re guessing that it’s because this sort of thing doesn’t happen very often. And last, just yesterday, Eli Broad popped up, fresh off his announcement of wanting to open his very own public museum, and said in an op-ed for the LA Times that he’d be happy to donate $30 million, as long as everyone else usually involved with giving the museum a few bucks here and there also pitched in. What will happen in the long run is anybody’s guess, given the financial crisis affecting every other possible business, but with Broad on board, it seems like a better than average fighting chance. Here’s a bit from his plea:

MOCA is one of our city’s cultural treasures, and it would be tragic both for the cultural health and civic reputation of Los Angeles if this institution ceased to exist. Not since the creation of Disney Hall has a civic issue arisen requiring the bold leadership and collective support of Los Angeles.

We came together to save Disney Hall. We can do it again.