The Chinese American Museum (CAM) strives to become a primary educational resource for the diverse communities of Los Angeles through our exhibits and educational programming. We aim to further strengthen and expand our community partnerships and collaborations to ensure that our programs are reflective of our entire community. Through the quality of our exhibits, programming, and community partnerships, we endeavor to become a nationally recognized, leading museum.
- To present exhibits on Chinese Americans illustrating their rich culture and heritage
- To define and interpret the role of Chinese Americans in establishing the California community
- To provide educational programs to the visiting public and schools
- To collect and curate both historical and contemporary arts, documents, images, and artifacts
- To serve as a research center on the 150-year Chinese American experience in California
CAM is housed inside the oldest surviving Chinese building in Southern California—the Garnier Building and an adjacent historic structure. The museum site is located within El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument, a 44-acre public park located in downtown Los Angeles at the city’s “birthplace.”
CAM is jointly developed and operated by the Friends of the Chinese American Museum (FCAM) and El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument, a department of the City of Los Angeles. Formed in 1987, FCAM is a 501(c)(3), nonprofit, grassroots organization that assists the museum by generating supporter interest and participation, acquiring and conserving artifacts, conducting research, planning museum designs, conducting community outreach, and raising funds.
The central location of El Pueblo Monument places CAM before a vast and diverse audience. This popular city park annually hosts 1.5 million tourists from Southern California and all over the world. One-third of the visitors to the park each day are local school children on field trips. CAM is committed to using its prime location to provide events and programs for its diverse ethnic, cultural, and geographic audiences, especially within Southern California.
CAM exhibitions and programs are generously supported by the State of California, the City of Los Angeles, FCAM, El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument, various granting agencies—including The California Arts Council, The Department of Cultural Affairs, The California Council for the Humanities, The California Community Foundation, The Getty Foundation, The Nissan Foundation, and The Annenberg Foundation—and an expanding source of hundreds of individual and community donors. The California Cultural and Historical Endowment recently awarded CAM $100,000 to assist with the museum’s expansion project.