About: Cheryl Preston

I'm a writer/editor in the Web Group of the Communications department. Previously, I was a writer/editor in the Education department of the Getty Museum.

Posts by Cheryl

Posted in Art, Exhibitions and Installations

The Miracles at Canterbury

Thomas Becket Window / Canterbury
St. Thomas Becket Window (detail), made in 1919 from fragments of 13th-century glass, Canterbury Cathedral. Photo: TTaylor via Wikimedia Commons

Born from Thomas Becket’s martyrdom on December 29, 1170, the stained glass in Trinity Chapel at Canterbury Cathedral reveals some of the most fascinating tales of the miraculous. More»

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Posted in Architecture and Design, Exhibitions and Installations, Getty Research Institute, J. Paul Getty Museum

Subterranean L.A.: The Urban Oil Fields

Union 76 Refinery / Connell
Union 76 Refinery at Night, about 1950, Will Connell. Gelatin silver print, 18 1/4 x 23 1/4 x 1/4 in. Lent by Stephen White, Collection II. Artwork © Will Connell

Since the 1890s, Los Angeles has literally and figuratively been built upon acres of ancient oil deposits deep beneath its shifting surface. More»

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      ROSE

      This milky pink boomed into popularity because of a marketing ploy, a mistress, and its ambiguous origins.

      In an effort to compete with the renowned Meissen porcelain factory, the French Sèvres manufactory recruited the glamorous Madame de Pompadour (mistress to King Louis XV). Like a smart sponsorship deal, Sèvres gave her all the porcelain she requested. 

      Introduced in 1757, this rich pink exploded on the scene thanks to favoritism by Madame Pompadour herself. 

      The glaze itself had a weird history. To the Europeans it looked Chinese, and to the Chinese it was European. It was made based on a secret 17th-century glassmaker’s technique, involving mixing glass with flecks of gold.

      For more on colors and their often surprising histories, check out The Brilliant History of Color in Art.

      12/19/14

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