Sad End for Pasadena Museum of California Art


Pasadena Museum of California Art was closed in October last year, and all items from the museum’s gift shop were 50 percent off before closing. PMCA Board voted in June 2018 for the permanent closure of this museum, and the final exhibits were in October until the final closing. This museum has been opened since June 2002 and was the home of the artistic history of California.

Since 2002, and the opening, this museum was the host of the many different exhibitions of Californian art. One of the most popular exhibition was Kenny Scharf’s graffiti garage. For example, this exhibition joined Amanda and Billy Fenwick, both Pasadena residents, who were later married in this place, at PMCA in 2006.


“We came on a free Friday. It was in one of those wedding books”, Fenwick said about how he met his wife. After a couple of years, they have married on the museum’s rooftop. Every year they come back to the museum to celebrate their wedding anniversaries with their daughter.

When she saw her wedding pictures, Amanda Fenwick began to cry. “I wish we had come here even more over the years”, explained her.

“Sadness overcame me. Nobody teaches you how to close a museum. It`s hard to look back to June because I’ve been focused on the present and the future”, said Dr. Susana Smith Bautista, the Executive Director of PMCA, the woman who first announced the closing of the museum.

Her job was to end the closure process in communication between PMCA and the California State Attorney General. She must archive the museum after the closing, and divide the PMCA`s art between local area museums, and give books to the Pasadena Unified School District.

The owner of the museum’s building is also museum founders Arlene and Bob Oltman, and they will trade the building.


Bautista and her team were working until October 31, when is the last day of the closure process, and after that, they were empty the building.

“Art lives on in the experience. That is how it is going to love on for me”, was the words of consolation said by Bautista.

The legacy of PMCA will continue to live in the memory of the art lovers, and Californian people.