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EXHIBITIONS & EVENTS AT A GLANCE (see below for more detailed information)

May 30-June 3             Carroll Shelby Tribute Exhibit

June 2                          Discovery Day - Gift Bags For Dad

June 16                        Exhibit Opens - Aerodynamics: From Art to Science

July 7                           Discovery Day - FANtastic Summer

July 12                         Children’s Workshop – Sculpture in Motion

July 23-27                   Miracle Mile Summer Camp

July 31                         Curator’s Tour - Aerodynamics: From Art to Science

August 4                      Discovery Day - Thirst Quenchers

August 7                      Children’s Workshop - Curate Your Own Petersen Exhibit!

August 11                    Family Fun Shop - Automotive Awareness

August 21                    Gallery Talk: 100 Years of Bertone

September 1                 Discovery Day - Back to School Pencil Topper

October 6                     Discovery Day - Haunted Cars

November 3                 Discovery Day - Car Magnets

December 1                 Discovery Day - Calendar Time
January 22, 2013         Gallery Talk: Streamline Moderne - From Science to Art)

Through Feb 3, 2013      Grand Salon- Sculpture in Motion: Masterpieces of Italian Design

Gordon R. Howard Gallery
Opens June 16

During more than a century of innovation, automobile manufacturers have dreamed up some unusual body designs.  From strange to stunning, the large majority of them were created in an effort to increase driving performance by reducing wind resistance.  When a network of high-speed motorways began to blanket the world, the need for genuine advances became ever more important and scientific experimentation yielded vehicle shapes that were becoming increasingly sophisticated.  The Petersen Automotive Museum exhibition Aerodynamics: From Art to Science will present an entertaining and enlightening visual overview of the landmarks of aerodynamic design.  From the quirky 1928 Martin Aerodynamic and pioneering 1940 BMW 328 Mille Miglia to the latest ultra-efficient concept cars of today, more than a dozen vehicles will be on hand to illustrate how the art of streamlining evolved into the science of aerodynamics.

Wednesday, May 30 through Sunday, June 3

There are few Americans who have the creativity, business savvy, competitive spirit and grit that it takes to become an automotive icon. Carroll Shelby International, Inc., Ford Motor Company, and the Petersen Automotive Museum will celebrate Shelby’s life with an exhibit of iconic Shelby automobiles from Wednesday, May 30, through Sunday June 3, 2012.  Nine Shelby automobiles will be on display, including the prototype Cobra CSX2000, the first production Cobra CSX2001, a Cobra Daytona Coupe, a 2013 Ford Shelby GT500, and more.  The Petersen Automotive Museum will extend its hours on May 30 until 9:00 p.m.
Monday, July 23 through Friday, July 27

“I’m bored.” Parents hear this every summer but no one has to be bored in Los Angeles!  Kids can have an exciting and educational experience this summer by joining Camp Miracle Mile, a joint project of the A+D Architecture and Design Museum, the Craft and Folk Art Museum, and the Petersen Automotive Museum who are partnering to provide kids with fun summer days.  Campers get to experience all three museums with fun craft, design, and art projects with something to appeal to any boy or girl ages 7-12.  Sign up for Camp Miracle Mile and make this summer special! Call (323) 964-6308, or email [email protected] for more details.
CHILDREN’S WORKSHOP: Sculpture in Motion
July 12, 2012, 9am–3:30pm

This workshop day will include icebreakers; a short guided tour of “Sculpture in Motion: Masterpieces in Italian Design,” focusing on themes of coachbuilders and creating custom bodies; and designing and creating individual custom bodies using clay modeling, paint, and paper mache techniques.
CURATOR’S TOUR - Aerodynamics: From Art to Science
Tuesday, July 31, 7:30PM

Petersen Curator, Leslie Kendall will guide guests through the fascinating developments in automotive design brought about by forward-thinking innovators during his Curator’s Tour on Tuesday, July 31, 2012 7:30 p.m. Reservations recommended at 323-964-6347.  Regular parking and admission rates apply.
CHILDREN’S WORKSHOP: Curate Your Own Petersen Exhibit!
Tuesday, August 7, 2012, 9AM–3:30PM

This workshop day will include icebreakers; a guided tour; designing and creating individual alternative vehicles using found and recyclable objects; designing and creating the exhibit (title, display, label text, audio tour); and making invitations to be presented to friends and family.
FAMILY FUN SHOP: Automotive Awareness
Saturday, August 11, 2012, 2–4 pm

Do you have a son or daughter who is almost of driving age?  Preparing for first car-ownership?  Excited about cars? Come as a pit crew family team and join docent Ward Francev in a hands-on Automotive Awareness workshop about car maintenance, tricks and tips of car ownership and much, much more!  Space is limited, so sign up early!  $25 per parent-child team for members/ $30 per team for non-members/ Parking included. For questions and to register, contact Lorianne at 323-964-6308 or [email protected]
Gallery Talk: 100 Years of Bertone
Tuesday, August 21, 2012, 7:30PM

Brand and Design Director for Stile Bertone Michael Robinson will share the past 100 years of design history from this esteemed Italian automotive design house.  Mr. Robinson is an American car designer who has lived and worked in Italy for the past 33 years.  Some of the most well-known designs to come from Bertone include the spectacular Berlinetta Aerodinamica Tecnica series from the 1950s, the Lamborghini Miura and Countach, and the Lancia Stratos Zero among many others. Call 323-964-6347, email [email protected]  for more information or to RSVP.
Gallery Talk: Streamline Moderne - From Science to Art
Tuesday, January 22, 2013 7:30PM

As the young science of aerodynamics was developing in the 1930s, the popularity of “streamlining” began to exert influence on many types of design.  From vehicles and appliances to architecture and industrial design, the Streamline Moderne style reflected the growth and popularity of speed, travel and technology in the 1930s.   Join John Thomas, President of the Art Deco Society of Los Angeles, as he presents an overview of the wide influence and variance of Streamline Moderne design beyond the realm of the automobile.  Call 323-964-6347, email [email protected]  for more information or to RSVP.
Car Activities & L.A. BookPALS
First Saturday of every month, 1-4pm

Join us on the first Saturday of each month for arts and crafts, and at 2:30pm, actors from L.A. BookPALS read stories. The program is included in Museum general admission. Call 323-964-6308 for more information. Future topics include:
June 2, 2012 Gift Bags for Dad
Decorate these gift bags and think up what to fill them with for Father’s Day!
July 7, 2012 FANtastic Summer
Decorate an automotive themed fan and use it to cool you down this summer!
August 4, 2012 Thirst Quenchers
Don’t go thirsty this summer! Join us and decorate your own sippy cup.
September 1, 2012 Back to School
Cool Design your own car pencil topper to remind you of the Museum while you’re at school!
October 6, 2012 Haunted Cars
Scare your friends this Halloween by making your very own mini wooden monster car!
November 3, 2012 Car Magnets
Keep your refrigerator door deCARated with a clever car magnet!
December 1, 2012 Calendar Time
Create a kooky car calendar and prepare for the new year!


Grand Salon
Through February 3, 2013

From the grand classics of the 1930s to modern supercars of today, Italian designers have influenced the look of automobiles on a global scale.  The Petersen Automotive Museum exhibition on Italian design will explore the many ways in which Italian coachbuilders and manufacturers have contributed to the evolution of the automobile from a collection of disorganized parts to a single, visually appealing unit.  Already well aware of the Italian contribution in the look of clothing, art, and architecture, museum visitors will be fascinated to learn that the country that gave the world Michelangelo and Botticelli also gave it the designers responsible for the exotic and inspired automobiles we have now come to expect from Italy.
Through April 29, 2012
Hollywood Gallery

In celebration of their Disney•Pixar Cars die-cast vehicles collection, Mattel, the #1 toy maker, will unveil From Silver Screen to Die-cast: Disney•Pixar Cars Imagined by Mattel, a comprehensive exhibit showcasing the history of its Cars die-cast collection. This special six-month exhibit offers families and Cars collectors an entertaining and informative glimpse into Mattel’s blockbuster toy line.
Through November 4, 2012
Art Wall

While one of Bruére’s early influences was American painter Norman Rockwell, Bruére’s subjects are predominantly automobiles, from concours award winners to Le Mans victors.  He has contributed poster art for important concours such as Meadow Brook and Villa d’Este and painted original artwork for numerous car manufacturers, including BMW, General Motors, Harley Davidson and Jaguar.  In addition to his painting, he creates bronze and aluminum sculptures and has designed several motor bikes.  He is also a member of the “Maison des Artistes”, the largest association of visual artists in France.
The Southern California Automotive Design Studio,
Presented in Cooperation with Art Center College of Design
Ongoing Exhibit

Visitors will see a comparison of a 1930's studio with a modern-day studio with various examples of the creative process in 2-D and 3-D form from different points in California's rich automotive history. Design demonstrations by Art Center students will occur in the exhibit on the second and fourth Sunday of every month from approximately 10am-3pm.
The Hot Wheels Hall of Fame at the Petersen Automotive Museum, features Hot Wheels® full-size and die-cast cars, original models, wooden patterns, injection molds and drawings of original vehicle designs.
From the highly styled 1963 Chrysler Turbine to the General Motors EV1, automobiles equipped with innovative propulsion systems are presented to illustrate the growth of alternative vehicle technology.

Open Tuesday-Friday, 10am-4pm, and Saturday & Sunday, 10am-5pm
The May Family Discovery Center is an interactive learning center that teaches basic scientific principles using the fundamental elements of the car.


– Please call (323) 964-6348 or visit to host your event or shoot film at one of LA's most exciting venues!

BIRTHDAY PARTIES - The Museum offers a wonderful venue for children’s birthday parties.  Party guests can enjoy all three floors of the museum including the May Family Discovery Center.  For more information or to book your party, call 323-964-6373. 
SCHOOL TOURS- Taking a field trip to the Pete is an excellent way to teach your students about the history of Los Angeles and its intertwined relationship with the automobile. Students learn basic scientific principles and their applications as they explore hands-on activities in the Discovery Center. School Tours focus on history/social science, visual arts, and science & technology. Call (323) 964-6358 for information and reservations.
GROUP TOURS – A docent-led tour is available to groups of ten or more. - (323) 964-6346.
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES - Come and be a part of the Petersen’s “Pit Crew”.  For an application or more information call - (323) 964-6358, email [email protected], or visit
MUSEUM STORE – Excellent souvenirs and gifts for auto enthusiasts (323) 964-6328.