Right now, the The Broad museum in Downtown Los Angeles is free to visit. Tickets have to be reserved ahead of time (or visitors can brave a long line to get day-of entry), but they don't cost anything. Starting June 11, that could change; a new special exhibit by photographer Cindy Sherman will open at the Bunker Hill museum, and tickets to see it will cost $12, reports KPCC.
While entrance to see Sherman's exhibit Imitation of Life on the first floor will cost visitors $12, admission to the museum's third floor gallery, where the general collection is kept, will still be free. But the fact that any part of The Broad would be charging an entry fee is taking some by surprise.
The Diller Scofido + Renfro-designed institution opened in September 2015, but was advertised as free to enter for years before. In a previous interview with KPCC, the museum's patron Eli Broad emphasized that the institution would be free and "didn’t provide a distinction between special exhibits and its permanent collection." He also noted that "it's only us and the Getty that offers free admission," comparing The Broad to a museum that doesn't charge for either special exhibits or general admission at either of its locations.
But the museum's director says that the museum has always planned to have free general admission, but paid entry to certain exhibits: "Our model from the beginning was free general admission with paid tickets for special exhibitions and programs." The Broad hasn't named any other planned special exhibits or what, if anything, museum-goers will have to pay to see them.