gallery programs

Posted in Exhibitions and Installations, Paintings

Thumbs Up or Thumbs Down? Looking at Gérôme’s “Pollice Verso”

Pollice Verso: Detail of vestal virgins in the stands / Gerome

Visitors are captivated by The Spectacular Art of Jean-Léon Gérôme.  I met a couple from Miami who were so intrigued by a review of the exhibition in The Art Newspaper that they decided to fly to L.A. to see it. … More»

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Posted in Education, Getty Villa

Museum Educators Get Creative with Focus Tours

Gallery teacher Amber Wells leads a discussion in the Athletes and Competition gallery at the Getty Villa.

Three o’clock is a good time to be at the Getty Villa. Depending on the time of year, the afternoon light might be streaming through the haze over the Inner Peristyle, a cool fog might be blowing in over the… More»

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Posted in Education, Getty Center, J. Paul Getty Museum

Art Circles—Better than Bowling

The Angel Appearing to Elijah, Ferdinand Bol, about 1643–4. Private Collection, New York
The Angel Appearing to Elijah, Ferdinand Bol, about 1643–4. Private Collection, New York

On a recent Saturday night, nearly 20 visitors tried to make sense of a huge, mysterious painting in the Getty Center’s Flemish gallery. Mysterious, because our leader, Lilit Sadoyan, had covered up the painting’s accompanying wall text. We were forced… 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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