The newest L.A. and O.C. museum exhibitions to see in October

Attendees view the community altar at Grand Park's Downtown Dia de los Muertos
The annual Dia de los Muertos public art installation at Grand Park in downtown L.A. returns this weekend.
(Jose Sanchez for Grand Park / Grand Park)

A salute to “Star Trek” at the Skirball, a “Witch Hunt” at the Hammer and Institute of Contemporary Art, an exploration of the first Koreatown in America at a UC Riverside museum and the return of the annual Día de los Muertos public art installation at Grand Park in downtown L.A. lead our October list of exhibitions across Southern California.

Check back here for weekly updates. And before you go, call or check online for reservation requirements and other COVID-19 protocols. The shows that have our attention:

New and upcoming

Downtown Día de los Muertos
This public art installation featuring 20 altars made by local advocacy organizations is on view through Nov. 2. A free celebration featuring the return of the annual Noche de Ofrenda ceremony plus dance performances and arts and crafts workshops is scheduled for 7 p.m. Oct. 23. Grand Park, 200 N. Grand Ave., downtown L.A. Park open daily from 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Free.


“Piñatas: The High Art of Celebration”
Handmade piñatas and piñata-inspired art objects crafted by 15 artists and artist collectives from the U.S. and Mexico are on view through Dec. 4; also available to view online. Craft in America Center, 8415 W. 3rd St., L.A. Open Tuesdays-Saturdays. Free.

“Where Do We Go From Here?”
This public art exhibition featuring works by contemporary artists who identify as women and people of color is on view through March 1. 7 Main, 700 S. Main St., L.A. Fashion District. Available anytime. Free.

“Passports for Life”
This new exhibit saluting the heroic efforts of Polish diplomats to save Jews during the Holocaust is on view through mid-December. Also on view: “Jack Boul: Reflections of a Post-War Europe,” paintings by Boul, a U.S. Army sergeant and artist who used art to express the horrors of the Holocaust (through Nov. 30). Holocaust Museum LA, 100 the Grove Drive, L.A. Open Thursdays-Sundays. $10, $15; students and California residents with valid ID, free; advance timed-entry tickets required.

“Fire! Science & Safety”
This new exhibit designed to educate visitors on how to mitigate as well as respond to fire dangers at home opens Oct. 29. California Science Center, 700 Exposition Park Drive, L.A. Open daily. Permanent exhibits are free; special exhibits, including the current Lego art show and IMAX films, vary in price. Reservations required. (323) 724-3623.

Academy Museum of Motion Pictures
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ newly opened shrine to all things cinema features exhibits exploring the art and craft of filmmaking, historic memorabilia including props and costumes, plus movie screenings, film series and artist talks. 6067 Wilshire Blvd., L.A. Open daily. $15-$25; ages 17 and younger are free. Reservations required. (323) 930-3000.

The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures has opened as the ultimate celebration of Hollywood history, Oscar lore and today’s movie makers.

“The Silent West”
Movie posters from the silent era are now on display. Also on view: “When I Remember I See Red: American Indian Art and Activism in California” (through Nov. 14). Autry Museum of the American West, 4700 Western Heritage Way, Griffith Park, L.A. Closed Mondays. $6-$14; children younger than 3 are free; reservations available online; walk-ups allowed at box office. (323) 667-2000.

“Witch Craft: Rethinking Power”
Zimbabwean artist Moffat Takadiwa explores the intersection of African politics and spirituality in a series of new assemblages on view through Jan. 9. Also on view: “Pouya Afshar: The Charm of the Unfamiliar,” multimedia works by the animator and visual artist examining the immigrant experience (through Jan. 9); “Consuelo Flores: The Roots of Our Resistance,” an altar by the L.A.-based artist dedicated to Black and Latinx communities affected by COVID-19 (through Jan. 9). Craft Contemporary, 5814 Wilshire Blvd., L.A. Open Thursdays-Sundays. $7, $9; Sundays are pay what you can; reservations required.

“Spooky Science Featuring the Monster Academy”
Kid-friendly, Halloween-themed interactive exhibits and hands-on activities are available through Oct. 31. Discovery Cube Los Angeles, 11800 Foothill Blvd., Sylmar; Discovery Cube Orange County, 2500 N. Main St., Santa Ana. Open Thursdays-Sundays. $13.95-$19.95; advance timed entry tickets required.

“Holbein: Capturing Character in the Renaissance”
Portraits of royals, courtiers, scholars and other once-prominent figures painted by German artist Hans Holbein the Younger are on display through Jan. 9. Also on view: “19th-Century Paintings and Sculptures,” works by Van Gogh, Rodin and others from the Getty’s permanent collection, normally housed in separate galleries, will be exhibited together while exhibition spaces in the West Pavilion are closed for renovations (through Jan. 2). Getty Center, Sepulveda Boulevard and Getty Center Drive, L.A. Closed Mondays. Free; advance timed-entry tickets required. (310) 440-7300.

Kehinde Wiley’s “A Portrait of a Young Gentleman”
Inspired by Gainsborough’s 18th century masterpiece “The Blue Boy,” this newly commissioned painting by the artist known for his portrait of President Obama (coming to LACMA in November) is on display through Jan. 3. Also on view: “What Now: Collecting for the Library in the 21st Century, Part 2,” the pandemic-delayed concluding segment of this exhibition tied to the Huntington’s centennial features an eclectic mix of photographs, sketches, maps, historical documents and ephemera (through Nov. 1). Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens, 1151 Oxford Road, San Marino. Closed Tuesdays. $13-$29; children younger than 4 are free; advance timed-entry tickets required. (626) 405-2100.

“Witch Hunt”
Co-presented by the UCLA Hammer Museum and Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, this international group exhibition of works by female artists explores the global impact of systemic patriarchy and colonialism on women, the LGBTQ community and Indigenous peoples. On view at both institutions through Jan. 9. Hammer, 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood; closed Mondays; free; reservations required; (310) 443-7000, ICA L.A., 1717 E. 7th St., L.A.; open Wednesdays-Sundays; free; (213) 928-0833,

“No Humans Involved”
Seven emerging artists and collectives explore race, gender, class and sexuality as viewed — or distorted — through the lens of Western humanism in this exhibit on view through Jan. 9. Also on view: “Hammer Contemporary Collection: Brian Jungen,” an installation by the Canadian and First Nations artist interrogating depictions of the Native American experience in popular culture (through Oct. 31). UCLA Hammer Museum, 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood. Closed Mondays. Free; reservations required. (310) 443-7000.

A guide to the most promising art shows in the season ahead: Peter Paul Rubens, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Hans Holbein the Younger, Thonet chairs and more.

“Pride Publics: Words and Actions”
Presented by the ONE Archives Foundation, this outdoor exhibit featuring 28 large-scale black-and-white portraits of LGBTQ trailblazers, first displayed in West Hollywood in June, moves to DTLA and is on view through Oct. 31 in honor of LGBTQ History Month. Los Angeles State Historic Park, 1315 N. Spring St., L.A. Open 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. Free.

“Pulling the Sun Back — Xa’aa Peshii Nehiino Taame”
The cultural heritage of L.A.’s original inhabitants, the Tongva people, is celebrated in this site-specific outdoor installation created by artist Mercedes Dorame in collaboration with architectural designer Lilliana Castro. It runs through Jan. 31. Los Angeles State Historic Park, 1315 N. Spring St., downtown L.A. Open 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. Free.

“Andy Warhol: Selections From the Luckman Permanent Collection”
More than 70 works by the iconic Pop artist are on view through Feb. 21. Luckman Gallery, Luckman Fine Arts Complex, Cal State Los Angeles, 5151 State University Drive. Open Wednesdays-Sundays. Free.

The ways in which humans organize their inner lives as well as the outside world are explored in this group show, through Dec. 26. Museum of Art & History, 665 W. Lancaster Blvd., Lancaster. Closed Mondays. Free; reservations required. (661) 723-6250.

Connectivity in the era of social distancing is the theme of this outdoor, interactive light installation, on view through Nov. 12. Central Park Paseo (outside the Museum of Neon Art), 216 S. Brand Blvd., Glendale. Free.

“Star Trek: Exploring New Worlds”
This special exhibit featuring props, models and costumes from the long-running science fiction franchise is on view through Feb. 20. Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., L.A. Closed Mondays. Special exhibition pricing: $13-$18; admission is free for everyone on Thursdays and for children younger than 2 every day; advanced timed-entry tickets required. (310) 440-4500.

Nichelle Nichols, the beloved Lt. Uhura on ‘Star Trek,’ is living with dementia and struggling financially. Three parties fight to control her fate.

“Fowler in Focus: Communication Systems in a Global Context”
This exhibit exploring written and visual communication from the dawn of history to the present day is on view Oct. 24 through Feb. 27. Also on view: “The Map and the Territory: 100 Years of Collecting at UCLA,” paintings, drawings, prints, rare books, ceramics, musical instruments and more (through Oct. 24). UCLA Fowler Museum, 308 Charles E. Young Drive North, Westwood. Open Wednesdays-Sundays. Free. (310) 825-4361.

“Art Ascending: Fall Art Show 2021”
Works by Karen Amy Finkel Fishof, Merissa Mann, L. Aviva Diamond and Robin Comanor are featured in separate exhibits on view through Dec. 27. Dortort Center for Creativity in the Arts at UCLA Hillel, 574 Hilgard Ave., Westwood. Open Mondays-Fridays. Free.

“Pachappa Camp: The First Koreatown in America”
The brief history of this early 20th century community of Korean American agricultural workers and their families is recalled via photographs, maps, documents and other ephemera in this exhibit on view through Jan. 9. Also on view: “Brandon Lattu: Empirical, Textural, Contextual,” the first U.S. survey of works by the photographer and visual artist (through Jan. 9). UCR Arts (California Museum of Photography, Culver Center of the Arts), 3824-34 Main St., Riverside. Open Thursdays-Sundays. Free; advance timed-entry tickets required.

“Crossroads: Exploring the Silk Road”
This new, interactive permanent exhibit teaches visitors about the centuries of cultural exchange sparked by the movement of travelers and goods along the ancient trade route. USC Pacific Asia Museum, 46 N. Los Robles Ave., Pasadena. Open Wednesdays-Sundays. $7, $10; free for ages 17 and younger, and every second Sunday of the month; advance tickets recommended. (626) 787-2680.

“Golden Hour: California Photography From the Los Angeles County Museum of Art”
The Vincent Price Art Museum reopens with this touring exhibit of works by more than 70 artists and photography collectives, on view through Feb. 5. Also on view: the video installations “Paraíso” by Tamara Rosenblum and “Liquid Light” by Javier Tapia and Camilo Ontiveros (through Feb. 5). VPAM, East Los Angeles College, 1301 Avenida Cesar Chavez, Monterey Park. Open Wednesdays-Saturdays. Free. (323) 265-8841.


“Nicole Seisler: Holding Patterns”
Works by the L.A. ceramicist will be on view through Dec. 19. American Museum of Ceramic Art, 399 N. Garey Ave., Pomona. Open Wednesdays-Sundays. $5, $7; 12 and younger, free. (909) 865-3146.

“Kim Abeles: Smog Collectors, 1987-2020”
This decades-spanning survey of the L.A. artist’s mixed-media works demonstrating the effects of air pollution will be on view through Dec. 18. Begovich Gallery, Cal State Fullerton, 800 N. State College Blvd. Closed Fridays and Sundays. Free.

“Alison Saar: Of Aether and Earthe”
This large survey of the acclaimed artist’s works is spread over two venues. Through Dec. 19 at the Benton Museum of Art at Pomona College, 120 W. Bonita Ave., Claremont; open Tuesdays-Saturdays; free; reservations required; The other half of the exhibition is on view through Dec. 12 at the Armory Center for the Arts, 145 N. Raymond Ave., Pasadena; open by appointment only Friday-Sunday; free;

A sculpture survey shared by two Los Angeles art museums

“Artistic Legacy: The Ann and Bill Cullen Collection”
Paintings and drawings from the estate of actress, model and artist Ann Macomber Cullen, wife of the late game-show host Bill Cullen, through Dec. 19. Also on view: “The Gift of Los Angeles: Memories in Watercolor by Gayle Garner Roski,"celebrating the life of the late L.A.-based painter (through Nov. 14). Bowers Museum, 2002 N. Main St., Santa Ana. Closed Mondays. $10-$15; children younger than 12, free; advance purchase recommended. (714) 567-3600.

“LaToya Ruby Frazier: The Last Cruze”
The artist documents the 2019 shuttering of an auto plant in Ohio, and the impact on the local working-class community, in photographs, video and an architectural installation in this exhibit that will be on view through March 20. California African American Museum, 600 State Drive, Exposition Park, L.A. Closed Mondays. Free. (213) 744-7432.

“Gifted: Collecting the Art of California at Gardena High School, 1919-1956”
Examples of early 20th century California Impressionist paintings by noteworthy artists will be on view through Jan. 9. California Museum of Art Thousand Oaks at the Oaks, 350 W. Hillcrest Drive. Open Friday-Sunday. Free. (805) 405-5240.

“Titanic: Real Artifacts, Real People, Real Stories”
The maritime disaster is revisited through photographs and personal effects, through Feb. 13. Also on view: “Gayle Garner Roski: Journey to the Titanic,” watercolor paintings document the late artist’s visit to the ocean liner’s sunken wreck in 2000 (through Oct. 24). Catalina Island Museum, 217 Metropole Ave., Avalon. Open Wednesdays-Sundays. $15, $17; kids 15 and younger are free with a paying adult; advance purchase recommended.

“Pipilotti Rist: Big Heartedness, Be My Neighbor”
This survey of videos, installations and sculptures by the Swiss multimedia artist will be on view through June 6. The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA, 152 N. Central Ave., Little Tokyo, downtown L.A. Open Wednesdays-Mondays. Special ticketed exhibition costs $10-$18 (advance purchase required; each ticket is good for a free second visit); children younger than 12, free. (213) 626-6222.

Get inside Pipilotti’s playhouse, a psychedelic excursion into the power of digital art.

“Motown: The Sound of Young America”
The storied record label is celebrated through stage costumes, musical instruments and more; on view though January. Grammy Museum, 800 W. Olympic Blvd., L.A. Open Friday-Sunday. $13, $15; ages 5 and under are free; advance timed-entry tickets required. (213) 765-6800.

“Wave — New Currents in Japanese Graphic Arts”
This touring exhibit, a survey of works by 55 contemporary Japanese illustrators and graphic artists, is on view through Nov. 28. Japan House Los Angeles, Hollywood & Highland, Level 2 Gallery, 6801 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood. Open daily. Free.

“Miné Okubo’s Masterpiece: The Art of Citizen 13660”
Illustrations from Okubo’s groundbreaking 1946 graphic memoir, depicting the harsh conditions that she and her fellow Japanese American citizens endured in a U.S. government-run incarceration center during World War II, will be on view through Feb. 20. Japanese American National Museum, 100 N. Central Ave., downtown L.A. Open Tuesdays-Sundays. $7, $16; reservations recommended, walk-ups available. (213) 625-0414.

“Carlos Almaraz: Evolution of Form”
Times columnist Carolina A. Miranda called the work of this late painter, subject of a 2017 LACMA retrospective, “vital to the ways in which Los Angeles sees itself.” This exhibition explores the Chicano artist’s early life to reveal influences on his style and form (through Jan. 9). LA Plaza de Cultural y Artes, 501 N. Main St., downtown L.A. Thursday-Sundays. Free; reservations suggested. (213) 542-6200.

“Wayne Thiebaud: Clowns”
Paintings, drawings and etchings, through Oct. 24. Also on view: “Hymns to the Silence,” black-and-white images of architectural structures by Jacques Garnier (through Oct. 24). Laguna Art Museum, 307 Cliff Drive, Laguna Beach. Closed Wednesdays. $5, $7; 17 and younger are free. (949) 494-8971.

“Tristan Eaton: All At Once: 25 Years of Art & Design”
New exhibit surveys the career of the L.A. painter, muralist, illustrator and designer, through Oct. 31. . Long Beach Museum of Art, 2300 E. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach. Open Thursdays-Sundays. Free; advance timed-entry tickets required.

Yoshitomo Nara
Three-decade survey of works by the Japanese artist (through Jan. 2). Also on view: “Cauleen Smith: Give It or Leave It,” multimedia works by the L.A.-based artist (through Oct. 31); “Acting Out: Cabinet Cards and the Making of Modern Photography, 1870–1900,” examples of photographic portraits of celebrities and everyday people from the closing decades of the 19th century through (through Nov. 7). Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 5905 Wilshire Blvd., L.A. Closed Wednesdays. $10-$25; kids 12 and younger are free; discounts available to L.A. County residents. (323) 857-6010.

Shuttered for a year, LACMA reopens Thursday with COVID-19 protocols, a Yoshitomo Nara show and a new direction for exhibitions.

“Evidence: Selections from the Permanent Collection”
A survey of the Museum of Contemporary Art’s holdings; through Feb. 21. MoCA, 250 S. Grand Ave., downtown L.A. Open Thursdays-Sundays. Free; special exhibitions, $10, $18. (213) 626-6222.

“Gabriella Sanchez: Partial Pictures”
Works by the L.A.-based painter and graphic designer, on view through January. Also on view: “Judy Baca: Memorias de Nuestra Tierra, a Retrospective,” works by the acclaimed Chicana muralist, educator and activist (through January). Museum of Latin American Art, 628 Alamitos Ave., Long Beach. Open Tuesdays-Fridays. $7, $10; younger than 12, free; advance purchase suggested.

“Discovery From the Deep”
A rare specimen of a Pacific footballfish is exhibited alongside a traditional Japanese print of the specimen crafted by artists Dwight and Hazel Hwang, through Nov. 29. Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, 900 Exposition Blvd., L.A. Closed Tuesday. $8-$17; kids 2 and younger are free; walk-ups welcome; reservations recommended. (213) 763-DINO.

“Unseen Picasso”
A selection of rarely exhibited prints by the Spanish artist will be on display through Jan. 10. Also on view: “The Swineherd,” a 1888 painting by Paul Gauguin on loan from LACMA (through Nov. 18). Norton Simon Museum, 411 W. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena. Closed Tuesdays-Wednesdays. $12-$15; students, active military and kids 18 and younger are free. (626) 449-6840.

“The Modern Chair”
Examples of cutting-edge chair design from the early 20th century to the present day will be on display through April 3. Palm Springs Art Museum Architecture and Design Center, 300 S. Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs. Closed Mondays-Wednesdays. $5.

“Eugene Daub: Monumental”
A retrospective exploring the sculptor’s process for crafting large-scale public works will be on display through Nov. 13. Also on view: Paintings inspired by random titles hidden in fortune cookies as part of an artist challenge; they’re in the group exhibition “Are You Thinking What I’m Thinking?” running through Nov. 13. Palos Verdes Art Center, 5504 Crestridge Road, Rancho Palos Verdes. Closed Sundays. Free.

“Bond in Motion”
Cars, motorcycles, boats and other vehicles used in James Bond movies though the decades will be on display in this new exhibit, on view from through Oct. 30, 2022, marking the 60th anniversary of the action-film franchise. Also on view: “Prototype Giants,” a special exhibition exploring the history and legacy of Porsche’s 956 and 962 race cars (through Nov. 19). Petersen Automotive Museum, 6060 Wilshire Blvd., L.A. Open Wednesdays-Sundays. Special exhibition fee is $40-$65 (includes admission to the rest of the museum); advance purchase required. (323) 930-2277.

Daniel Craig’s final James Bond adventure is a classic blend of fresh and familiar, and it arrives just as cinemas need it the most.

“Art and Hope at the End of the Tunnel”
This group show curated by art critic Edward Goldman and featuring new works by 35 L.A.-based artists will be on view through Dec. 4. USC Fisher Museum of Art, 823 W. Exposition Blvd., L.A. Closed Sundays-Mondays. Free. (213) 740-4561.

“Deep Connections”
Black-and-white images by photographer Ken Karagozian chronicle three decades of subway construction in Los Angeles; on view through 2021. Union Station’s Passageway Art Gallery, 800 N. Alameda St., downtown L.A. Available anytime.

“Environmental Reflections: Contemporary Art From the Frederick R. Weisman Art Foundation”
Humankind’s relationship with the natural world is explored in paintings, photographs and other work on view through Dec. 5. Weisman Museum, Pepperdine University, 24255 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu. Open Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays. Free; advance timed-entry tickets required.

“Memory Structure, Scaffold Series”
L.A.-based artist Sichong Xie interrogates the hidden contributions of labor in this new installation, on view through March 20. Also on view: “See Thy Neighbor: Stern Photographers Thomas Hoepker and Harald Schmitt in the GDR,” two photographers with very different points of view on East German life in the 1970s and ’80s (through Oct. 24); “Transformations: Living Room -> Flea Market -> Museum -> Art” and “Relics of the Cold War: Photographs by Martin Roemers” (through Oct. 24). Wende Museum, 10808 Culver Blvd., Culver City. Open Friday-Sunday. Free; reservations required. (310) 216-1600.


11:48 a.m. Oct. 4, 2021: The pricing for the exhibition “Star Trek: Exploring New Worlds” at the Skirball Cultural Center has been updated based on new information received by The Times.

An earlier version of this article said “Lightwave” is at the Museum of Neon Art. It is outside and unconnected with the museum.