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Wednesday, July 7, 2010
The Getty Museum: Los Angeles
This week I took a two day trip to Los Angeles, CA. I was there visiting my mother for the holiday and we decided to go to the Getty Museum. I had been there once before; however, my knowledge of art history was not up to par enough to fully enjoy the experience. This time leaving the Getty I was filled with a sense of awe and inspiration.
To get there you must park down the mountain and take a monorail to the actual complex. The monorail station itself is adorned with sculptures and fountains. At the top of the hill is a series of buildings designed by Richard Meier that are mostly made up of square and round elements made out of stone slabs from a river in Italy. The stone is filled with fossils of leaves, fish, and other organic material deposited into the river over the years. This makes each stone in the building a marvel on its own.
The art is mostly Renaissance to the early 20th century along with some photo journalism exhibits from the 1960's to present. The main exhibit this time is The Art of Gerome which will be there until September. I had not seen much of his art besides some samples my instructor had shown us in class. To see the Art of Gerome up close is a once in a life time experience, and to see almost every major painting of his at once is a great thrill. I was upset there were no pictures aloud in this exhibit but I can understand why. A lot of the art is too old and delicate for flash photography. High flash can drain the color from paintings. There was also a great exhibit featuring antique religious scripts of every major religion. There was a bible there I noticed written in gold ink from as far back as the year 1200 A.D. in perfect condition.
Every piece of art and furniture is of the highest caliber at the Getty Museum and the complex is art itself. For someone trying to get a quick dose of culture this is a sure shot. There is a parking fee of $15 that pays for everyone in the car. The food and beer is reasonably priced and good. I left inspired to not be scared to do larger paintings and with a sense of urgency to push my skills as far as possible. If I am one day to be considered one of the greats I need to put some work in.