Arts District Daze

BLOG: The Joys of Gallery Hopping at the Downtown Art Walk

The Los Angeles art community has been one of the biggest winners in the redevelopment process that has turned Downtown Los Angeles, in only a matter of a few years, into a destination hub for locals and visitors alike.

This revitalization of the city’s core neighborhood—an area of iconic buildings immortalized in countless noirs and other classic Hollywood films as the quintessential stylish urbanscape—has also highlighted the multitude of museums and galleries within walking distance of the DTLA luxury rentals at 888 at Grand Hope Park. To get the lay of the land regarding current art production in Los Angeles, residents of 888 at Grand Hope Park can simply walk out of their lavish lobby (a work of art in and of itself) and head to the Downtown Art Walk, happening monthly only a few blocks away from their home.

Every second Thursday of the month, from noon until 10 pm, volunteers from the Los Angeles art community organize one of the world’s most popular art walks around the Financial District and the Historic Core. The Art Walk began in 2004 along Main and Spring Streets but quickly expanded from 4th and 7th to 3rd and 9th, as more galleries started opening their doors to the thousands of visitors (between 10,000 and 25,000, depending on the month).

The monthly Art Walk is free and self-guided, though the organizers also offer paid monthly tours of the galleries and a bimonthly tour of the murals and street art throughout the revitalized DTLA area. All activities during the event are coordinated from the Downtown Art Walk Lounge, set up at The Last Bookstore and hosted by the Spring Arts Collective. (And while you’re at the bookstore, check out and take a selfie at one of the permanent book-focused installations). Food carts and other pop-ups are also a regular part of the art-centered revelry.

If you’ve just moved into one of the new luxury rentals, you might want to take the guided tour your first time out and then return every month to check out the constantly evolving gallery landscape around DTLA. The offerings are as vast as you would expect from this world-class city, ranging from Gloria Delson Contemporary Arts—founded by a pioneering Los Angeles gallerist who’s now in her 90s, which gives pride of place to female artists and emerging artists of all ages, to the Hive Gallery and Studios, which focuses on young and emerging artists and has close ties with the contemporary art scene in Japan. Even institutions like MOCA and the Broad organize activities in tandem with the immensely popular Downtown Art Walk.

Art lovers at 888 at Grand Hope Park should definitely mark the second Thursday of each month on their calendar and head to the nearby Historic Core. Meandering through art galleries and exhibits in this exclusive neighborhood is certainly one of the best ways to experience a new perspective on Downtown LA’s art scene while thriving in the Downtown LA lifestyle.