Behind the Scenes, Getty Research Institute, Publications, Research

The Getty Research Journal: Diverse, Collaborative, International

The third issue of the Getty Research Journal has just been published. Each year, the Journal presents new research on the Getty’s broad holdings and highlights the diverse interests of our staff and scholars. The journal’s goal is to share collaborative and innovative scholarship, but it also tells a story about the intellectual life of the Getty.

That story begins with the cover, which depicts an installation called Tatlin Squared that was created at the Getty Research Institute by artist, writer, and former Getty scholar Brian O’Doherty.

Cover of the Getty Research Journal, issue 3 (2011) featuring Brian O'Doherty's Tatlin Squared

Inside is a selection of scholarly articles that reflect the many facets of research here: pieces by art historians, curators, and conservators bring a variety of approaches to the study of art, from archival research using the Research Institute’s special collections to physical and scientific examination of works on display in the Museum’s galleries.

The subjects covered—in the latest issue, topics range from medieval Islamic architects to a 16th-century Florentine inventory of buildings to a collection of modern Los Angeles photography—are deliberately diverse and offer a glimpse at the wide range of international projects undertaken by staff, scholars, and visiting researchers. We encourage contributions from established and emerging scholars alike and are always on the lookout for articles that speak to different disciplines, whether art history, museum history, cultural studies, or conservation and conservation science.

We also seek out articles that offer new perspectives on objects in our archival and Museum collections, or that use our holdings to open up new avenues of research.

Spread from the 2011 volume of The Getty Research Journal

Spread from 'Fantin's Failed Toast to Truth' by Bridget Alsdorf in the 2011 volume of The Getty Research Journal

As issue 3 comes out, we’re already hard at work on issue 4, which will be published in 2012. Like the latest volume, it will contain several articles developed during the annual scholar year, which in both 2009-10 and 2010-11 took the display of art as its theme. This means different things to different people, of course, so we’re looking forward to publishing another highly diverse range of articles covering everything from the ancient to the contemporary.

The process of publishing an article in the Journal is a long one, involving many different people. From its initial submission, an essay is typically read by several people, including the editor and members of the editorial board, which is made up of subject specialists across the Getty. We also send it for peer review—evaluation by external readers who can offer an expert opinion about its scholarly contribution.

Once an article has been accepted, our publications team works on editing, formatting, and proofing it to get it ready for publication. Sometimes articles need to be translated, since many of our authors are international and write in their own language. The staff in the GRI’s Digital Services department photographs documents and objects from the special collections to illustrate the articles. And the designer organizes the text and images into pages ready for printing, while the production coordinator proofs color images and ensures the quality of the printing and binding.

It’s a big undertaking, but the result is worth it: a beautifully illustrated publication that reflects the vital importance of new and innovative research not only at the Getty, but in the fields of art history and cultural studies more broadly.

Spread from the 2011 volume of The Getty Research Journal

Spread from 'Process and Collaboration in a Seventeenth-Century Polychrome Sculpture: Luisa Roldán and Tomás de los Arcos' by Jane Bassett and Mari-Tere Alvarez in the 2011 volume of The Getty Research Journal

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    • photo from Tumblr

      Head flasks were a trend starting in the 1st century A.D.

      A little taller than 6 inches, this young man’s head could be filled with any liquid. 

      Blue Head Flask, A.D. 300 - 500, Roman. J. Paul Getty Museum.

      09/20/14

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