California African American Museum temporarily shuts, citing Hilary “water intrusion” issues

Chloë Bass’ sculpture.
Chloë Bass’ sculpture, an analemmatic sundial, at CAAM.
(Photo: Elon Schoenholz; from CAAM)

The Exposition Park-based California African American Museum, which was closed yesterday due to Hilary, announced Monday that it will temporarily close following issues sustained from the tropical storm. (The museum is normally closed on Mondays.)

“We remain closed to address facilities issues caused by the storm. We will reopen as soon as possible; watch here for updates. Thank you for your understanding,” the museum announced on social media platform X.

“CAAM is in the midst of assessing how the storm affected our facility,” museum representative Emma Jacobson-Sive said in a statement to The Times. “Unfortunately, water intrusion occurred in some areas of our building. Experts are helping us determine the impact and next steps, but for the time being the Museum will remain closed to the public.”


Earlier this month, CAAM debuted a nearly $5-million building upgrade. That included, among other things, weatherproofed glass ceiling panels in the atrium — thankfully. CAAM also added a new HVAC system, refinished floors and a new roof as part of the recent renovations.

The California African American Museum, which has been closed since last year, will reopen this weekend with six new exhibitions and upgraded facilities.

Aug. 4, 2023

The museum was closed for the better part of a year until recently. Its galleries started closing last August for a deferred maintenance project, though it debuted art in the atrium in November. In May, CAAM closed completely. It reopened with a celebratory dance party earlier this month that also included the debut of five new exhibitions.

The recently opened exhibitions at CAAM — a mix of art, history and culture — are robust and dynamic. One show features contemporary work by 12 artists, including L.A.-based Mark Bradford, addressing Black migration; two are historical exhibitions; there’s a short film by South Los Angeles artist Darol Olu Kae, as well as a solo presentation of large-scale wheat pasted drawings by Tatyana Fazlalizadeh. A new, interactive outdoor sculpture by conceptual artist Chloë Bass also functions as an analemmatic sundial.