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Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego

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Address: 700 Prospect St, La Jolla, San Diego, CA 92037-4291
Phone Number:
+1 858-454-3541
11:00 - 17:00
Closed now
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Thu - Tue 11:00 - 17:00

With two locations, the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego is the...

With two locations, the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego is the region's foremost forum devoted to the exploration and presentation of the art of our time, presenting works across all media created since 1950. MCASD provides an unprecedented variety of exhibition spaces and experiences for the community, showcasing a dynamic schedule of exhibitions and public programs. Located in the coastal community of La Jolla, take in the fabulous ocean view from the Edwards Garden Gallery, or lunch on the patio at the Museum Café. MCASD La Jolla also houses the Museum's X Store, filled with a selection of contemporary art books, apparel, and innovative design objects. Situated directly across the street from the La Jolla Cove and within walking distance to the renowned Wedding Bowl in Cuvier Park, MCASD La Jolla's spectacular ocean views and distinctive architectural design make it an exclusive venue for your big day. Our La Jolla location offer spaces that are adaptable and elegant, from a grand reception with dinner and dancing in our remarkable Axline Court to an intimate wedding ceremony overlooking the ocean in our picturesque Pacific Union Pocket Park. History Established in 1941. Founded in 1941 as The Art Center in La Jolla, the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego (MCASD) has evolved into an organization of national and international renown. The Museum serves the region as a vital cultural and civic asset, with contemporary art and living artists at its core. The La Jolla location was originally an Irving Gill-designed residence, built in 1916 as the home of philanthropist Ellen Browning Scripps. Today, MCASD La Jolla comprises nearly three acres of prime oceanfront property, including the Edwards Sculpture Garden. Venturi, Scott Brown & Associates' renovation of MCASD's La Jolla location opened in 1996.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 175 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 70
  • 55
    Very good
  • 17
  • 8
  • 5
Great site for modern art

The downtown branch of the MCASD has one portion of the Santa Fe train station. Thus, their high ceilings are very conducive to showing big modern art pieces and sculpture. The... read more

Reviewed 16 June 2015
San Diego, California
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175 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 155: English reviews
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
34 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 July 2015

Great collection, and so close the the ocean. Well worth a visit. I attended the La Jolla Fashion Film Festival and all the screenings were at the auditorium in the building. There is also a great cafe attached where I has a wonderful breakfast!

Thank katrinamottahed
Shanghai, China
Level Contributor
91 reviews
35 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 July 2015

Undeniably one of the best museums in San Diego. Pictured here is the LA Jolla location which overlooks a stunning stretch of ocean and beach. There is another "branch" in downtown San Diego next to the train station. Each location is different in both vibe and intent, do visit the MCASD website to learn more. Both museum locations are, in... More 

Thank Merunisha P
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
154 reviews
75 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 July 2015

Nice little museum. Interesting art displays. Has an outdoor art display. Magnificent ocean view. Not good for young children. It's not a place for kids who need to run around. Docents are not very nice. If you appreciate contemporary art, this place is for you. Otherwise, try something else.

Thank Jeanne P
Level Contributor
512 reviews
135 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 330 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 July 2015

I go to art museums whenever I travel. I was surprised to find such an excellent sophisticated collection in La Jolla. We enjoyed the exhibitions and the sculpture garden.

Thank BuffCrone
St. Johns, Florida
Level Contributor
42 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 July 2015

Great experience for such a small place. Very impressive collection and would highly recommend the Dr. Seuss showings whenever they are back. Easy to get to and a great location to walk to the Children's pool afterwards.

Thank Kscott9244
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
67 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 July 2015

Food and service were very good. Art work made the experience that much nicer. Prices are reasonable considering the very nice venue.

Thank Kevin S
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
290 reviews
178 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 June 2015

The downtown branch of the MCASD has one portion of the Santa Fe train station. Thus, their high ceilings are very conducive to showing big modern art pieces and sculpture. The current show "Grace and Gravity by El-Anatsui" has recycled art pieces dripping off of the walls and snake-like slithering or peak sculptures erupting from the floor. Because there is... More 

Thank GlobalGypsy_13
Paris, France
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 June 2015

Don't miss the downtown museum close to the Santa Fé . Together they presented top exhibitions. Very Friendly staff

Thank Véronique C
Level Contributor
555 reviews
164 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 886 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 June 2015

The La Jolla branch of MCSD is a must-see. The current exhibit - Nicole Eisenman - is amazing, as are the other collections. The history of the building itself is fascinating, and the modern areas are so well-designed (e.g. the windows-within-windows where spaces have been cut out in the glass). The best thing is that your ticket is valid for... More 

Thank tjh2
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
18 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 May 2015

Fantastic show currently at the museum till September 7,2015. Besides the phenomenal art in the current exhibit, their regular museum pieces are lovely as is the location overlooking the ocean. .

Thank BSL32

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