Gardens and Architecture

What to see at the Getty Center and the Getty Villa outdoors

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Edible Gardening in the Renaissance


What grew in the Renaissance garden? Many familiar favorites, from cabbage to strawberries. More»

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Also posted in Architecture and Design, Art, Behind the Scenes, J. Paul Getty Trust, Voices

Our L.A., Mapped

Screen Shot 2013-05-15 at 8.03.42 AM

What place says “L.A.” to you? What’s your favorite building, corner, or monument? What is your L.A.? More»

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Also posted in Getty Center

Hi! I’m an L.A. Native.

Cream cups (Platystemon californicus)

They say L.A. has no center; they say it’s a desert. We native Angelenos know that’s not true—and not just when it comes to architecture, either. More»

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Also posted in Behind the Scenes, Getty Villa, Photographs, Film, and Video, Voices

The Transformative Outer Peristyle

Sunrise Outer Peristyle

Stunning by day, by night, at sunrise and at sunset, the Outer Peristyle at the Getty Villa is also a backdrop from a dramatic duck love story. More»

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Also posted in Behind the Scenes, Getty Villa, Photographs, Film, and Video, Voices

The Waltz of the Hummingbirds

Tahnee Cracchiola © 2009 J. Paul Getty Trust

Waltzing hummingbirds captured in a fleeting second by accident. Nature’s surprises sure do deliver beautiful photographs. More»

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Also posted in Behind the Scenes, Photographs, Film, and Video, Voices

Getty Voices: Getty Gone Wild


Photographic encounters with deer, birds, butterflies, and other wildlife of the Getty.

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Posted in Gardens and Architecture

For California Gardeners, Winter Is the New Summer

European honeybee on tidy tips in the Central Garden

Winter, the sere season? Not in California, where the cool months are our lushest, our most verdant of all. More»

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Also posted in Art, Manuscripts and Books, Voices

Getty Voices: Renaissance Gardens


A journey through Renaissance gardens and their paradoxes: natural and artificial, sin and salvation, virtue and vice. More»

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Also posted in Behind the Scenes, Getty Center

Pollarding the Getty Knuckle Trees

sycamore tree on restaurant plaza
Pruned sycamore tree branches "like jacks made of wood"

What is this strange tree, and why does it look this way? Pollarding explored and explained. More»

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Also posted in Behind the Scenes, Getty Villa

A New Light: 15 Hours in the Getty Villa Gardens

Villa Gardens Detail

I’m often struck by how transformative a place the Getty is. Throughout the day a great deal can change. While the crowds do come and go, I’m often most transfixed by the subtle shifts of light, the surprising movement of… More»

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      #ThyCaptionBe: You Look Like Hell

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

      Escaping the in-laws or medieval Sea World? It’s actually an extreme punishment for a dress code violation. 

      Here’s the full story:

      The Christian tale of Saint Josaphat is roughly based on the life of the Buddha in a kind of medieval game of telephone, in which the sources for the text passed through Christian circles in the Middle East in the 8th century before appearing in European versions in the 11th century. 

      Here an unsuitably dressed guest—we can see that his tattered clothing and scruffy facial hair have no place at the well-dressed gathering—is cast into the dark, open mouth of a terrifying animal. 

      To make matters worse, the story is a parable in which Barlaam, Josaphat’s Christian teacher, describes the sinful who do not make the cut at the Last Judgment.

      Holiday Lesson: Always check the dress code.

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


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