Off the Beaten Path: Museum Photo Walks
Of all the addictions (I'm willing to admit), museum rambling probably tops the list. Maybe it's the mix of a focus on time and place leavened with something a little odd or unexpected that draws me to at least one in every place I visit. And then there's the lure of rotating exhibitions, seasonal entertainment, and chatting up the gallery security (their stories are usually better than the docents).
Another plus, for the most part, museums are egalitarian in their mission. While admission prices may be steep, you can still take advantage of free days or discounts. Several I've visited even promote a 'pay what you can' philosophy. And, like public libraries, lingering is encouraged. Photo policy however varies greatly not only from museum to museum but even within the galleries. If there are visible QRC codes printed on an object label, I consider it safe to use my camera (or camera phone) but only shoot using ambient light - no flash.
Each museum has its own personality: suggesting the tone and look of the city surrounding it as often as reflecting what's displayed inside its walls. I like them all whether short, squat, round, ornate, open to the elements, botanical, ethno-graphical, natural, mechanical, majestic, or virtually unknown. Someone took the time and effort to catalog and display treasures - local, loaned, or "acquired" - and there are stories to be told.
(Los Angeles County Museum of Art)
California Science Center
The Met (Metropolitan Museum of Art)
African American Firefighter Museum (Los Angeles)
MOCA (Museum of Contemporary Art) - Geffen Contemporary
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