About: Lyra Kilston

I’m an editor in the Public Affairs department of the J. Paul Getty Museum. Previously I was a research and curatorial assistant in the Department of Architecture and Contemporary Art at the Getty Research Institute.

Posts by Lyra

Posted in Art, Behind the Scenes

Art Experts Take to Twitter for Ask a Curator Day on Wednesday, September 17

Karen1
Poised for any question: Karen Hellman of the Getty Museum's Department of Photographs

Five Getty curators are on tap for a live Twitter Q&A this Wednesday. More»

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Posted in Exhibitions and Installations, J. Paul Getty Museum, Paintings

Who Was James Ensor?

The Skeleton Painter / James Ensor
Royal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp. © 2014 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / SABAM, Brussels. Image © Lukas-Art in Flanders vzw, photo Hugo Maertens

Belgium’s most eccentric, scandalous, and shocking painter is the focus of an exhibition at the Getty Center this summer. More»

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Posted in Architecture and Design, Behind the Scenes, Getty Research Institute, Voices

Getty Voices: Our L.A.

Getty Voices: Lyra Kilston's L.A. map
My L.A.: My life mapped on the landscape.

Did you walk through Overdrive and see part of your story? What are your junctions of place and history? What buildings reflect a bit of who you are? More»

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Posted in Architecture and Design, Getty Research Institute, Photographs, Film, and Video, Publications

“The Photographer with the Soul of an Architect”: Lucien Hervé

Cover of Le Corbusier & Lucien Herve / Getty Publications

In 1949, self-taught photographer Lucien Hervé (1910–2007) traveled from Paris to Marseille to see Unité d’habitation, a housing complex by architect Le Corbusier. Awed by the groundbreaking modern design, Hervé took 650 photographs of it in a single day. When… More»

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      gettypubs:

      COBALT

      The histories of many colors are amazing, but cobalt may well have the most brilliant of them all. From the Ming Dynasty to Renaissance Italy, cobalt was a popular glaze for porcelain and other ceramics. Cobalt ink is invisible unless exposed to flame, which turns it a vivid green. In the 17th century, this quality made Europeans believe it was witchcraft, but decades later it was used as a neat trick on fire screens. It wasn’t until 1802 that painters added cobalt to their palette. 

      It is this little tidbit from cobalt’s history that saved master forger Han van Meergeren’s skin after WWII, when he was tried for collaborating with the Nazis. Want to find out how some art history sleuthing and smart science got him a not guilty verdict? Hint: Don’t try to forge a Vermeer with cobalt! 

      Read all about it in The Brilliant History of Color in Art!

      Images, clockwise:

      Glazed earthenware dish with a marchant ship, Italy, about 1510. 

      Glazed earthenware tile floor, Spain, about 1425-50.

      Porcelain lidded vase, China, about 1662-1772.

      All objects from the J. Paul Getty Museum. 

      12/18/14

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