The Hammer is now open! Learn more and make reservations.

Before your visit

Before Your Visit

Explore the exhibitions page to see what’s currently on view. Consider organizing your visit around a theme and just choose a few works of art to look at during your visit. Talk about what the pieces had in common (or didn’t!). Try focusing on identity, material, or color, or explore what art is and can be. Wonder what inspired artists and search for your own inspiration.

Old and New: At the Hammer Museum, you’ll see artworks made by artists living today and art made hundreds of years ago. Compare works in our Armand Hammer Collection with the Hammer Contemporary Collection. What differences and similarities do you notice? 

Road|View: Don’t just keep your eyes on the road for this exercise but look out your car window (when at a stop light, of course). A windshield or window can be a framing device to see the world around you in a new way. What compositions do you see within the frames? What shapes and forms can you see on your commute to the museum?

High-Five! Hold up your hand. Can you name 5 things—one for each finger—that you can do in a museum? You can talk with someone you came with, bring paper to sketch with pencil…what else? While museums can be places of endless adventure, there are a few guidelines to remember. Share snacks and drinks in the courtyard beneath the sunshine and not in the galleries. To preserve art for others to experience, remind kids not to touch artwork (unless you’re explicitly asked to). Inform them that natural oils and dirt from our skin can damage artwork.

Print family-friendly activities: Check out our family and teen guides in advance of your visit and bring your favorite activities with you to the museum. (Note: Printed copies of our Discovery Guide are available at the museum.)