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LA's Broad Museum: A Downtown Destination Fit for the Instagram Age

Welcome back to Critical Eye, Alexandra Lange's incisive, observant, curious, human- and street-friendly architecture column for Curbed. In this edition of her monthly column, Lange journeys west to ogle the brand new Broad Museum in Los Angeles. And ICYMI, catch up on her past columns about architectural gamer paradise Monument Valley, newly revamped Clark Art Institute in Western Massachusetts, the changing face of Buffalo, and the sidewalk-level impact of waterfront development around the Brooklyn Bridge.

Gefilte fish. Tripas. Cheese grater. Packing material. Scratching post. Coral. Except for the last, provided by the building's architect, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, all of these visual allusions suggest that Los Angeles's new Broad Museum—which houses Eli and Edythe Broad's 2,000-piece contemporary art collection—is in stiff competition for the free-association sweepstakes waged by its neighbor, Frank Gehry's Disney Concert Hall. Who can forget the sweeping romanticism of Herbert Muschamp on Gehry's Guggenheim Bilbao (the older brother of Disney): "It's a bird, it's a plane, it's Superman. It's a ship, an artichoke, the miracle of the rose."

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