Sculpture and Decorative Arts

Artwork in three dimensions and a variety of media, from ancient bronzes to Neoclassical marbles; plus furniture, porcelain, paneled rooms, and other decorative objects of great artistry

Also posted in Exhibitions and Installations, Getty Center, Getty Research Institute, J. Paul Getty Museum, Paintings

A Walk through “Pacific Standard Time: Crosscurrents,” Opening This Weekend

Inside Crosscurrents: Helen Lundeberg's canvas Blue Planet with John Mason's sculptures Vertical Sculpture, Spear Form and Orange Cross

In the ocean, a crosscurrent runs across the main flow, stirring things up. Similarly, you can see different artistic movements, crossing each other from a variety of directions, in the exhibition Pacific Standard Time: Crosscurrents in L.A. Painting and Sculpture,… More»

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Also posted in Conservation, Exhibitions and Installations, Getty Conservation Institute

Gray Column Rises

Gray Column / De Wain Valentine

One of the most influential sculptors active in Los Angeles in the 1960s and 1970s, De Wain Valentine is perhaps best known for his striking, semitransparent, and delicately colored large-scale polyester resin sculptures of simple geometric forms that interact intensely… More»

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Also posted in Architecture and Design, Education, J. Paul Getty Museum

Exploring 18th-Century Fashion, Garment by Garment

garment_by_garment

Did you know that artists used pig bladders to carry paint before tubes were invented, that the gold leaf used to gild paintings and manuscripts was made by pounding a coin into thin sheets, or that 18th-century fashion designers used… More»

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Also posted in Art, Education, J. Paul Getty Museum

Question of the Week: Can Love Last Forever?

Venus and Adonis / Massimiliano Soldani Benzi

Can love outlast death? Love and desire sizzle in this sculpture showcasing Venus and Adonis. Venus is desperately in love with Adonis, a handsome mortal. However, fate has it that goddess of love will not hold onto her man. Preferring… More»

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Also posted in Art, Behind the Scenes, Conservation, Getty Conservation Institute, Getty Research Institute, J. Paul Getty Museum

Conserving Lichtenstein’s “Three Brushstrokes”

Three Brushstrokes.  Copyright Estate of Roy Lichtenstein.  Gift of Fran and Ray Stark.
Three Brushstrokes. Copyright Estate of Roy Lichtenstein. Gift of Fran and Ray Stark.

A long lively stroke of deep brilliant blue, black, and white, a curved swipe of muted yellow, a short dab of red—perhaps you’ve seen artist Roy Lichtenstein’s colorful painted aluminum sculpture Three Brushstrokes on a visit to the Getty Center…. More»

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Also posted in Art, Exhibitions and Installations, J. Paul Getty Museum

Clocks and Globes – How Prosperous Parisians in the 18th Century Navigated Their Day (with Bonus Ringtone)

Installation view of Paris: Life & Luxury at the J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center
Installation view of Paris: Life & Luxury at the Getty Center

Enter Paris: Life & Luxury, closing this Sunday, and you’ll hear chimes pinging through the galleries from extravagant clocks that French aristocrats used to mark time more than two centuries ago. Download (MP3 file, 5 MB) | Length: 5:24 The… More»

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Also posted in Exhibitions and Installations, J. Paul Getty Museum, Paintings

Power Breakfast Inspired by a King: The 18th-Century Toilette

The Milliner / Francois Boucher

When posh Parisians in the mid-18th century greeted the day, their morning ritual wasn’t anything like our hasty shower, breakfast, and dash out the door. Their toilette, or ritual of rising and dressing, was an hours-long activity of luxurious pampering,… More»

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Also posted in Behind the Scenes, Getty Center, J. Paul Getty Museum

The Making of Charles Ray’s “Boy with Frog”

Boy with Frog (detail), Charles Ray (American, born 1953), 2009. Painted fiberglass, 96 1/16 x 29 1/2 x 41 5/16 in. Courtesy the artist and Matthew Marks Gallery

Peering up at a giant sculpture, I often wonder: How do artists construct such massive creations? Here’s a peek at the journey, from artist’s conception to the Getty Center’s doorstep, of the larger-than-life Boy with Frog, which was installed yesterday… More»

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Also posted in Antiquities, Art, J. Paul Getty Museum, Paintings

The Italian Showcase

Portrait of a Halberdier (Francesco Guardi?), Pontormo, 1528–30. The J. Paul Getty Museum, 89.PA.49

If our globe had a school playground, could you spot Italy? That’s right, the one voted “most popular.” Good-looking, sharp, charismatic. Plus, a rock star in art class. This year, the popular kid turns 150. Surprisingly, the nation that for… More»

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Also posted in Exhibitions and Installations, J. Paul Getty Museum

Paris Gamblers: Gaming in 18th-Century France

Interior with Card Players, Pierre-Louis Dumesnil, about 1752. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Bequest of Harry G. Sperling, 1971 (1976.100.8) TMS Creditline Repro: 	   	Image copyright © The Metropolitan Museum of Art / Art Resource, NY

Players of backgammon, bridge, and bingo might feel a keen camaraderie with the prosperous Parisians of the 1700s whose sumptuous world is brought to life in the current exhibition Paris: Life & Luxury. The well-coiffed elite of the time relished… More»

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      All Hail Tiberius, Least Media-Savvy of the Roman Emperors

      Tiberius was proclaimed Roman emperor on September 17 in AD 14, exactly 2,000 years ago.

      He was also a bit wacko. “He was the least media-savvy emperor you could imagine,” says curator David Saunders, who has been in charge of this bronze portrait of Tiberius which leaves us on September 22. He point to this description found in the writings of Cassius Dio:

      Tiberius was a patrician of good education, but he had a most peculiar nature. He never let what he desired appear in his conversation, and what he said he wanted he usually did not desire at all. On the contrary, his words indicated the exact opposite of his real purpose; he denied all interest in what he longed for, and urged the claims of what he hated. He would exhibit anger over matters that were far from arousing his wrath, and make a show of affability where he was most vexed…In short, he thought it bad policy for the sovereign to reveal his thoughts; this was often the cause, he said, of great failures, whereas by the opposite course, far more and greater successes were attained.

      Moreover, David tells us, “Tiberius’s accession itself was a farrago: Tiberius sort-of feigning reluctance, the Senate bullying him, he being all, ‘Well, if-I-have-to,’ and in the end—according to Suetonius—saying he’ll do it as long as he can retire.”

      Suetonius is full of great, albeit spurious, anecdotes about poor old Tiberius, David reports. “When someone addressed him as ‘My Lord,’ it is said, Tiberius gave warning that no such insult should ever again be thrown at him.”

      Happy accession, My Lord!

      Portrait Head of Tiberius (“The Lansdowne Tiberius”), early 1st century A.D., Roman. The J. Paul Getty Museum

      Statue of Tiberius (detail), Roman, A.D. 37, Soprintendenza Speciale per i Beni Archeologici di Napoli e Pompei – Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli, Laboratorio di Conservazione e Restauro. Currently on view at the Getty Villa following conservation and study.

      09/17/14

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