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 Financier, philanthropist, and art collector Eli Broad is suing a German sub-contractor that was hired to create a unique, latticed facade for his forthcoming flagship museum. The Broad Collection, or The Broad for short, was slated to open in downtown Los Angeles by the end of 2014, but officials announced in February that the date had been pushed to 2015 due to construction delays. The $140-million institution will house approximately 2,000 contemporary artworks, including pieces by Jeff Koons, Takashi Murakami, Cindy Sherman, Andreas Gursky, and Mark Grotjahn, from the collection of Broad and his wife, Edythe.

The lawsuit, filed on Friday, May 30 in Los Angeles Superior Court, accuses Seele Inc., an architectural engineering and fabrication firm based near Munich, of numerous infractions, including breach of contract, fraud, deceit, and unfair competition. Seele was brought on by Broad and the museum’s general contractor Matt Construction in late 2011 to create the institution’s “veil” -- a honeycomb-esque facade that wraps around the building’s exterior and is expected to be one of The Broad’s most distinctive features. Seele has helmed numerous projects in the U.S., including creating striking exteriors for the Seattle Central Library and the New York Times’s Manhattan headquarters.

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Los Angeles’ Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), which has been plagued by financial troubles for years, has quadrupled its endowment to over $100 million in the past nine months. Just last year the Los Angeles County Museum of Art offered MOCA $100 million to merge its two facilities with its own larger facilities. MOCA turned down the offer, opting to remain independent and launch a fundraising campaign for its endowment.

The campaign garnered the support of nearly 30 donors including financier and philanthropist Eli Broad and his wife, Edythe, who bailed the museum out nearly six years ago with a $30 million donation, and Jeffrey Deitch, MOCA’s former director. The museum is still searching for a permanent director following Deitch’s tumultuous departure.

MOCA is currently the only museum in Los Angeles dedicated solely to  collecting and exhibiting contemporary art. Its collection includes works by Roy Lichtenstein, Claes Oldenburg, Mark Rothko and Robert Rauschenberg.

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Thursday, 19 September 2013 17:26

New Broad Museum will Offer Free Admission

The Broad, Los Angeles’ newest contemporary art museum, will offer free general admission when it opens in late 2014. The museum’s founders, Eli and Edythe Broad, made the announcement during a hardhat tour and preview of the institution. Eli Broad said, “It has long been our goal to ensure that the contemporary artworks in the Broad collections are seen by the broadest possible public. We believe that free general admission to the The Broad will help draw visitors to all of the cultural institutions along Grand Avenue.”

Designed by the New York City-based studio Diller Scofidio + Renfro, the new museum will present approximately 2,000 works from the Broads’ collections in a gallery space spanning over 50,000 square feet. In addition to the public galleries, The Broad will be the headquarters of The Broad Art Foundation, a lending library of contemporary art created by the Broads in 1984. Since establishing the foundation, the Broads have loaned over 8,000 works of art to nearly 500 museums and galleries across the globe.

The $140 million museum has created over 1,000 new jobs and is being built entirely with union labor.

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