Monthly Archives: March 2012

Posted in Behind the Scenes, Exhibitions and Installations, Getty Research Institute

Treasures from the Vault: The Sky Gets a Chance! Gordon Matta-Clark Works on View at the Research Library

Display case of Gordon Matta-Clark materials at the Getty Research Institute framed against the sky

A new display case about American artist Gordon Matta-Clark just opened at the Research Library at the Getty Research Institute. I selected the items in the small case—which is just past the reception desk of the Research Institute lobby—from the archive… More»

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Posted in J. Paul Getty Museum, Prints and Drawings

From Auction to Gallery: A Major Renaissance Portrait Drawing for the Getty

Portrait of a Young Man, Head and Shoulders, Wearing a Cap / Piero del Pollaiuolo

I find auctions terrifying. Mesmerizing, but terrifying. When a major early Renaissance portrait drawing came up for auction at Sotheby’s in New York a month ago, my stomach was in my mouth. It was the sort of drawing one hardly… More»

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Posted in Art, Exhibitions and Installations, J. Paul Getty Museum, Manuscripts and Books

The Manuscript Files: An Impish Ape in a Medieval Zoo

Adam Naming the Animals in the Northumberland Bestiary / English

One of my favorite acquisitions of the past five years in the Getty’s manuscript collection is the Northumberland Bestiary (Ms. 100), featured currently in the Gothic Grandeur exhibition. A bestiary is a kind of medieval encyclopedia of animals. In addition… More»

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      Banned Books Week—History Edition

      Giordano Bruno revealed ancient secrets of improving memory by writing about the method of loci, also known as the memory palace.

      This technique is still used today as a way to memorize vast amounts of information. By “putting away” information into the drawers and rooms of a familiar place in your mind, you can access this info later by mentally “opening” the right drawer. 

      Unfortunately, this idea was not accepted during the Roman Inquisition. Bruno was burned at the stake in 1600 and his book was on the Vatican Index of Prohibited Books.

      Enjoy a completely digitized copy: De umbris idearum, 1582, Bruno Giordano. The Getty Research Institute

      Banned Books Week celebrates the freedom to read. This week we’re sharing examples of books from cultural history that have been attacked, vilified, or otherwise banned.

      09/24/14

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