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Wednesday, June 8, 2016

LA Museums: Vol. 1 - Autry Museum of the American West

When we first moved, it took me a long time to get out of my bubble. I like to imagine myself as independent and spontaneous, but any motivation to go on solo adventures was easily squelched -- I was internet-less, smartphone-less, and occasionally car-less. 

In order to get out of the house, I had to walk to a cafe, order coffee I didn't care for, ask for a wifi password, handwrite directions, and go back to the apartment to recover from whatever awkwardness that ensued whilst at the cafe. What awkwardness, you might ask? Try walking twenty minutes before being told that the coffee shop doesn't have wifi, but only after you've already ordered a $6 decaf latte ("Really? You want decaf?" the man-bunned barista contests incredulously.). Or how about getting to the cafe only to find that the tables are the size of postage stamps and your laptop must actually rest on your lap. Or knocking over thirty dollars of potted plants with your left hip while getting up for napkins to clean up the coffee you spilled on yourself. My self-imposed ban from that place kept me away for a good four months, but luckily we finally got internet by the end of January (another long story for another time). 

Somewhere in all of this, I managed to write down every free day for every museum within twenty miles and my first stop was the Autry Museum of the American West. Being that it was a free day, the rooms were packed with an odd blend of school groups and senior citizens. The people-watching was almost more entertaining than the exhibits, but since photographing strangers is creepy, I only have pictures of art and artifacts to share with you. Here are a few of my favorites.

A River Runs Through It by Billy Schenck, oil on canvas, 2011
Mesa Drifters by Logan Maxwell Hagege, oil on canvas, 2013
Sierra Trail by Edgar Payne, oil on canvas  

One of the best parts of the museum was the section of Western movie memorabilia and toys, but my camera battery had already died. You can thank Google images for this great rocking horse photo. 

via tripadvisor

What's your favorite museum? Do you like to go alone or in a group? Do you find school groups entertaining or obnoxious? Tell me about it in the comments! 


  1. Glad you are getting out Kate. Mimi LOVES museums so I will have to tell Pops to let her read your blog. I like to go with someone but I like to walk around by myself. I enjoy all museums, especially history and religious. I love Wax Museums too but I can never get anyone to want to go with me! That one I would want to walk around WITH someone!

    1. Thanks, Mama! I'm going to try and do a series of posts of the museums. I've never been to a wax museum but I don't know -- I'm always a little freaked out by dummies...