So much has been written about The Broad that I almost that we have reader’s fatigue on the subject. That said, I keep returning to show it to new people, but also to spend more time with certain pieces.
- Jenny Holzer’s “Inflammatory Essays.” Installed on a back wall that can be easily overlooked, the wall also can be viewed as a hidden haven in the museum. There is enough space between the wall and the art that I keep finding myself gazing at it in a similar manner as one would find themselves if ever standing at the Wailing Wall. It’s a piece for communing, about feminism and society and the violent, paradoxical world we inhabit. But it’s funny and always eloquent too. Like many of my favorite art pieces, it’s almost impossible to process this piece in 1 visit. I’ve seen various incarnations of it over the past decade and the more I see it, the more I want to return and watch others thrust into the colorful rage of text and ideas. 2. Ellsworth Kelly’s Room. I only pinpoint this one piece, it’s a perfect visual companion to Holzer’s wall of text. 2 colors, a canvas, a curve. It’s art that is a feeling. Pure radiance.
3. Barbara Kruger’s “Have Me Love Me Feed Me.” This series of lenticular photographs from the late 80s is a disturbing and provocative play on the innocence of babies. Five photographs depict cute babies with Kruger’s signature red on white text overlayed. “Psychotic, Neurotic, Schizophrenic,” and so on. It’s Kruger at both playful and pointed, and it’s oh so good. 4. Robert Therrien’s “Under The Table.” It’s 2016, and this means every contemporary museum understands there needs to be participatory pieces for photo ops. Therrien’s “Under The Table” was not as well-known as any piece by Koons, Hirst or Kusama when the museum opened last year, but now it is associated with The Broad. It’s where you’ll see entire families huddled together posing. It’s a nonstop photo op. I love the scale of the piece and in those rare moments where there aren’t dozens of people trying to capture it all, I find it mesmerizing to stand under the table alone, look up at the details of the underneath, the simple seams of woods that we forget as we spend the rest of our lives above tables, polishing surfaces and remember a time when everything felt bigger and I was smaller safe below.