basketry

Posted in Behind the Scenes, Conservation, Getty Villa

Seeing Art’s Bones: X-Raying Plant Fiber Objects at the Getty Villa

X-raying objects at the Getty Villa: Jeff Maish measures the distance between the table and the machine, while student Tessa de Alarcon adjusts the equipment to the desired height

We’re all familiar with the X-rays used to take images of people’s bones and teeth at medical and dental facilities. But did you know this same technology can also be used to examine the internal structures of museum objects? At… More»

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Posted in Art, Getty Foundation

Finding Art (and Baskets) Online

Strawberry basket by Kelly Church (Ottawa/Chippewa) at the Autry

Bringing collections online in such a comprehensive way is a huge undertaking, encompassing not only cataloguing and technology but also photography, rights issues, and more. More»

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      #ThyCaptionBe: Warnings to the Rich & Powerful

      You captioned this detail. And we’re revealing the full story now.

      It would be awesome if this was Medieval hangman, or a really awkward frat party, but it’s actually the result of a one-letter swap gone wrong in a book about the fates of the rich. 

      Here’s the full story:

      You sometimes regret what pops out unexpectedly when you open your mouth, but in this case, even the fish must have been quite surprised when a wooly lamb burst forth. 

      The stories in this text by Giovanni Boccaccio warn of the terrible fate that often awaits the rich and powerful. He uses here the example of King Polycrates, who tossed a ring into a river, hoping for good luck, and found it later in the mouth of a fish. 

      Someone got confused, though, and instead of a ring (in French, annel), what came out instead was a lamb (agnel). Apparently, neither the ring nor the lamb worked because the king was later hanged (background).

      #ThyCaptionBe is a celebration of modern interpretations of medieval aesthetics. You guess what the heck is going on, then we myth-bust.

      08/31/15

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