Los Angeles exhibitions: the best shows to see right now

Read our ongoing picks of the best Los Angeles exhibitions to see under the California sun this week

Man leaning on bike
A Young Man Resting on an Exercise Bike, Amityville, NY, 1988, Dawoud Bey, gelatin silver print
(Image credit: Dawoud Bey. Courtesy of Stephen Daiter Gallery)

When it comes to Los Angeles exhibitions, the scene is undergoing something of a gold rush. Drawn to the city's light, space and multifarious identifies, a flurry of East Coast-anchored and European galleries have announced new outposts in Los Angeles, including Pace, Lisson, Sean Kelly, The Hole and Hauser & Wirth, which anchor the city during events like the relatively nascent (but monumental in scope) Frieze Los Angeles fair. 

Nowhere does art quite like Los Angeles. Explore the top Los Angeles exhibitions to visit under the California sun

Los Angeles exhibitions: current

Thomas Albdorf: ‘Body Double’
Until 29 July 2023
Webber LA

Thomas Albdorf artwork

Four Letters, Part Two, 2022

(Image credit: Courtesy Thomas Albdorf and Webber)

Open now at Webber’s new LA outpost, Thomas Albdorfs ‘Body Double’ explores visual myth-building. It’s a practice common to Los Angeles, the setting to which Albdorf alludes, with its associations of Hollywood and sun-soaked concrete; and also to AI imaging processes, a tool of the artist’s, which invent the unreal through reference to the real. Talking about the future of photography, the Austrian artist tells us, ‘I am concerned about losing our connection with reality, our way of looking at and engaging with the world through a camera, but I am also curious about where artificial images can lead us too.’ With this concern and curiosity existing simultaneously, Albdorf’s ‘Body Double’ asks us to reflect upon the assumptions we make of our visual languages and the consequential narratives. 


Dawoud Bey & Carrie Mae Weems: ‘In Dialogue’
Getty Center
Until 9 July 2023

Carrie Mae Weems photo of family at kitchen table

Untitled (Woman and daughter with children), 1990, Carrie Mae Weems.) Gelatin silver print

(Image credit: Courtesy of the Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York. © Carrie Mae Weems)

After meeting each other both aged just 23, Dawoud Bey and Carrie Mae Weems individually grew influential practices across the past five decades while sharing a dialogue of creativity, identity, and social consciousness. Now, in this Los Angeles exhibition at the Getty Center, audiences are for the first time fully let in on the dynamic connections and contrasts between these artist friends as they explore the everyday realities of Black Americans across changing years, while also speaking to the broader human condition. 


Christine Sun Kim: ‘Bounce Back’
Until 10 September 2023

Christine Sun Kim, preparatory drawing for Bounce Back , 2023 at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles

Christine Sun Kim, preparatory drawing for Bounce Back, 2023 at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles 

(Image credit: Courtesy of the artist)

Berlin-based American artist Christine Sun Kim will soon adorn the façade of the ICA in a new large-scale mural that engages with the limits and possibilities of language (spoken, signed, or scripted). Bounce Back (2022) takes debt as its subject, signed in American Sign Language (ASL) by one index finger tapping the open palm of the other. The piece explores how one sign can carry a number of nuanced meanings in ASL, as well as layered issues of systemic inequity and the experience of those in debt. 


Harriet Lloyd-Smith was the Arts Editor of Wallpaper*, responsible for the art pages across digital and print, including profiles, exhibition reviews, and contemporary art collaborations. She started at Wallpaper* in 2017 and has written for leading contemporary art publications, auction houses and arts charities, and lectured on review writing and art journalism. When she’s not writing about art, she’s making her own.

With contributions from