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Posted in Behind the Scenes, J. Paul Getty Museum, Paintings

Audio: Gallery Talk on Turner’s “Modern Rome”

Modern Rome–Campo Vaccino, Joseph Mallord William Turner (English, 1775–1851), 1839. Oil on canvas, 36 1/8 x 48 1/4 in. (unframed), 48 1/4 x 60 3/8 x 4 3/8 in. (framed). The J. Paul Getty Museum, 2011.6
Modern Rome–Campo Vaccino, Joseph Mallord William Turner (English, 1775–1851), 1839. Oil on canvas, 36 1/8 x 48 1/4 in. (unframed), 48 1/4 x 60 3/8 x 4 3/8 in. (framed). The J. Paul Getty Museum, 2011.6

Emily Beeny of the Museum’s paintings department recently gave a gallery talk for eager Getty staff to acquaint us with the Museum’s new painting by J.M.W. Turner, whose arrival and installation we posted about on Friday. We invite you to… More»

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Posted in Art, Exhibitions and Installations

A Tale of Two Beths

Christ and a Monk and Two Shepherds in a Franco-Flemish bestiary made about 1270. This page is on view in the exhibition Illuminated Manuscripts from Belgium and the Netherlands through February 6.

When you write novels for a living, as I do, you get used to making things up—places, plots, people. What you don’t expect is to hear back from one of those characters you’ve cooked up out of thin air. Imagine the… More»

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Posted in Behind the Scenes, Getty Center, J. Paul Getty Museum, Paintings

A Curator Undercover at the Museum Info Desk

Hans Hoffmann's A Hare in the Forest is curved because its wooden support has warped with time.

As the Getty Museum’s senior curator of paintings, I feel it is incumbent on me to walk through the galleries almost every day, speaking with the security officers and other staff and watching how the public looks at the collections…. More»

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Posted in Behind the Scenes, Exhibitions and Installations, Prints and Drawings, Sculpture and Decorative Arts

Seven Things I Learned from “Leonardo da Vinci and the Art of Sculpture”

Banners for Leonardo da Vinci and the Art of Sculpture: Inspiration and Invention at the Getty Center

Now that the Leonardo exhibition has closed, as co-curator—along with Anne-Lise Desmas, associate curator in the Department of Sculpture and the Decorative Arts—I can take stock of some of the things I’ve learned. I’m sad to see the exhibition go,… 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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