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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      It’s been 125 years since Van Gogh’s death, today we celebrate his life’s work.


      5 Ways to See Van Gogh’s Irises

      Through observations, visitor conversations, and some sneaky eavesdropping, we’ve compiled the top 5 ways people enjoy this painting.

      1. In a Crowd
        One of the most obvious ways that people see the painting is in a crowd. The gallery is almost always filled, and you might have to wait before you can get up close. The anticipation builds as you start in the back row, and slowly move until you are close enough to see the brushstrokes of Van Gogh’s thick paint.

      2. Online
        David from Colorado said that this was his first visit, but he had already seen the painting online. In addition to being available through the Getty’s Open Content program, the painting is often seen on social media. Just search #irises on Instagram for a taste of the painting’s popularity. 

      3. Alone
        If you arrive right at 10 a.m. when the museum opens, the quiet gallery provides a perfect backdrop to really examine the painting. Solitude and seclusion gives the gallery a sense of intimacy. 

      4. Multiple Times
        Repeat visits can give rise to multiple interpretations. Is it a melancholy or joyous painting? Expressive or depressive? 

      5. Internationally
        Visitors from all across the world viewed this famous Van Gogh. In just one hour you can hear multiple languages—French, Italian, Chinese, Korean, German, and more. Irises seems to rise above cultural boundaries—a Dutch painting inspired by Japanese ukiyo-e prints—to strike an emotional resonance amongst all viewers. 

      What is your favorite lens to view Van Gogh’s work through? 

      07/29/15

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