The art of light and color

Photos by Lauren Valencia


     The Museum of Neon Art (MONA) located in Glendale was founded in 1981 by Lili Lakich and Richard Jenkins. This museum has had a variety of different exhibitions which all include the use of neon art and its use overtime. MONA is conveniently located across the street from the Americana at Brand shopping complex.

     MONA currently exhibits The Art of Plasma which will be displayed until July 30th. This exhibition is a collaboration that features a variety of work by approximately 28 artists including, David Svenson, Roger Carr, Dina Kalahar, and Ross Levine who make use of light and color with their work to depict the results of gas ionization in glass vessels, according to Jeff Landa, a contact reporter at the Los Angeles Times.  

     The museum bridges science and art into one medium. The process of creating something through neon art has been put to extraordinary use. According to the website, MONA was created for preserving neon signage and has seen the use of neon incorporated in the sign industry at its highest and lowest point. MONA is seeing the use of neon being brought back once again by different artists.

     MONA  invites guests with a neon exterior and giant glass windows. At first glance, the gift shop is visible from the street. MONA is open Thursday through Sunday and there is a general admission charge of $10. Classes are offered to the public that take place in a room called the Electric Lab. Fees vary for the classes offered at the location. Visitors are introduced to the room where the exhibitions are showcased. Given that the pieces displayed are neon art the room is dark and it’s only light source is that of the different art pieces.

     The museum is self-guided, and guests are invited to explore the pieces on display. Photography is allowed in the museum, and the exhibition includes sculptures of skeletons, plants, and robotic like people. Famous signs are also on display at MONA including the Pep Boys sign which can be seen when you first walk in.

     Apart from the exhibitions, MONA offers the public a ‘Neon Cruise’ where people can buy tickets for a tour of neon signs and installations of neon art throughout downtown Los Angeles and Hollywood.


Location: 216 S Brand Blvd, Glendale, CA 91204

Hours: Th-Sat.: 12pm-7pm

Sun.: 12pm-5pm

Phone: 818-696-2149