Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego

Museum of contemporary art san diego 2

The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego welcomes all to experience our region and ourselves through the prism of contemporary art. MCASD achieves this mission because of visionary supporters who believe in the transformative power of art.

“Contemporary art sparks insight, inspiration and ideas that have the power to not only change ourselves but catalyze change in our communities and throughout our world,” Kathryn Kanjo, MCASD’s David C. Copley director and CEO shared with GB Magazine. “Our community deserves a site of shared experiences and reflection.”

You spark ideas: The Expansion
At one point, four times the gallery space was just an idea. Today, an expanded Museum in La Jolla has welcomed more than 40,000 guests since reopening in April. As noted in the Los Angeles Times, “the redesign reoriented the entire structure to the stunning feature it had long turned its back on: the Pacific Ocean.” Kanjo proudly adds, “Soaring ceilings and natural light allow for inviting displays of the collection alongside lively, changing exhibitions.”

You spark insight: Exhibitions and Collections
With the expansion, MCASD’s flagship building is at last scaled to showcase the work it has collected over the past decades. MCASD’s collection numbers more than 5,600 works from 1950 to the present. Its inaugural collection exhibition at the expanded Joan and Irwin Jacobs Building highlights this rich history and display works that have rarely been on view, including works by John Baldessari, Larry Bell, Sam Gilliam, Robert Irwin and Barbara Kruger to name a few.

“Our collection includes some of the greatest artists from the past century that represent diverse geographies, aesthetics, genders, races, and often reflect the Museum’s position by the Mexico border,” Kanjo shared. “With this added space we can consistently present these objects to a curious public.”

At the same time that the Museum’s historical collection is highlighted, MCASD is using its special exhibition galleries to highlight on the work of trailblazing women artists from the recent past. These presentations advance new scholarship for underexamined artists. These solo exhibitions include Niki de Saint Phalle, Yolanda López, Alexis Smith and Celia Alvarez Muñoz among others.

You spark inspiration: Youth Programs and Family Days
MCASD’s education efforts include offerings like:
• Extended School Partnerships: In-classroom education
• Teen Arts Collective: High school juniors and seniors build their own exhibitions
• Prebys Play Days: Fun, activity-filled Sundays designed for the entire family
“The Museum is a feeding ground for experiences, learning and perspective,” said Karla Centeno, director of education and engagement. “Arts education is a powerful tool for understanding the societies we live in.”
This year alone, the Extended School Partnerships program has served nearly 300 students, engaging them in creative thinking. Prebys Play Days have welcomed over 2,000 visitors to the Museum.
Today, join our community of visionary donors and make a gift in support of the art you love—the same art that sparks inspiration into ourselves and the world we share. Visit to make your gift.

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Esteban Villanueva