A Visit to the Getty Center

Posted on December 17, 2011 by Holly Hayes
Part of: California and Vegas Road Trip

On Thursday of our visit to Los Angeles, we visited the Getty Center. Opened in 1997, it is a large complex of buildings on a hilltop founded by an oil billionaire, J. Paul Getty. I was surprised by the somewhat limited amount of art, most of which dates from after 1300, but it is displayed very well - lots of space, good labels, beautiful frames and painted backgrounds. Also, its modern architecture is beautiful, admission is free (although parking is $15), and it provides great views over the city. A smooth 5-minute tram takes you from the parking lot to the hilltop.

In addition to an art museum, the complex houses the Getty Research Institute, a scholarly organization for the study of art. I've licensed two of their art databases for Go Historic, so it was fun to see the headquarters of that as well.

It didn't take too long to explore the museum, so we had some time for a snack on the (unfortunately rather cold and windy) outdoor terrace and to take lots of photos. The light was really spectacular most of the time - between that, and the architecture, and the art (and a very good turkey baguette sandwich), I was in heaven!

Approaching Tram


View from the Getty Center

Getty Center, Los Angeles

Getty Center, Los Angeles

Waiting for the Elevator

That Profile by Martin Puryear

View from Above

Getty Center, Los Angeles

Courtyard and Entrance Hall

Entrance Hall

West Pavilion Interior
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Irises (1889) by Vincent van Gogh: Detail