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Although the inferno could not be contained for days, miraculously, the erratic Santa Ana winds did not push the flames across the highway to the west, where Cuno and key members of his staff anxiously monitored flare-ups from a secure location. In the end, the Getty, its grounds and its irreplaceable works of art remained unscathed — its gleaming travertine buildings continuing to stand proud and pristine, with their breathtaking 340-degree view of the City of Angels below. “The firemen did an extraordinary job,” says the executive. “They slept here – not because they were protecting the Getty Center particularly – but because they had no place else to go, and we opened our facilities for them.
“Our food service people were fantastic, and rallied to make food for them, We provided them with shavers, and soap and shampoo because these people were working around the clock, and rarely do they find horizontal surfaces to sleep on, let alone beds or cots.”, Twenty years ago this month, the Getty’s first visitors climbed into what would become the center’s signature white tram that took them ballet shoes sketch easy up a steep hillside to the J, Paul Getty Museum, the Getty Research Institute and various auditoriums, libraries, administrative offices, restaurants and outdoor gardens known collectively as the Getty Center, The pale, modernist buildings were designed by famed architect Richard Meier; the zen-like Central Garden by artist Robert Irwin..
Although admission has always been free, when the Getty first opened to the public in December 1997, demand was so overwhelming that advance parking reservations were required for the first few years. Since then, 20 million visitors from around the globe have made the pilgrimage to see such iconic pieces as Van Gogh’s “Irises” and Goya’s Bullfight, “Suerte de Varas” – including 53 students from Miss Schmidt’s art class at Barton Elementary in San Bernardino. Most of the youngsters had never been to a museum before.
“They have a huge span of diverse artwork – Greco-Roman, Renaissance, they even have a Vincent Van Gogh!” Schmidt exclaimed, “I hope it inspires the kids to want to continue art, even when they get older and have a career.”, Cuno says the museum’s educational program hosts 160,000 school children annually, Many are from low-income schools, whose transportation is subsidized by the Getty, “The most important thing is that the students are ballet shoes sketch easy treated warmly and respectfully when they arrive,” says Cuno, “It doesn’t really matter whether they know the difference between Manet and Monet, It matters most that they feel that this is their place, and they can come again and bring their families.”..
Vy Nguyen, 22, is a nursing student at Chaffey College in Rancho Cucamonga. She’s come to the Getty with her family to gather information for a research project. “I’m doing it for a culture class in my honors program,” she explains. “I rarely go to L.A., so it’s really nice to visit the museum.”. “There was some criticism when they chose to build the Getty Center on this site because it was thought to be removing it from the city, and putting it up on a hill, distant from downtown Los Angeles,” Cuno admits. “But those who criticized it then have been proven wrong, because the people have come in such great numbers.”.
Lately, 1.6 million people a year have been making their way up the ballet shoes sketch easy hill for what the CEO calls “the most visited visual arts institution west of Washington, D.C.”, “We’ve got lectures, we’ve got concerts, we’ve got readings and family festival events,” he says, In March, the Getty Center will roll out the red carpet for the community when it hosts a 20th birthday bash with music, dance, games and crafts for all ages, There’s also a Robert Polidori photography exhibit featuring behind-the- scenes images shot during the Getty’s construction, and an Art and Ideas podcast series with Cuno interviewing Getty architect Richard Meier, as well as others with tales to tell about the center’s growing impact as an international cultural and philanthropic organization..
Its global emphasis is why Cuno felt compelled to issue a statement addressing President Trump’s travel ban earlier this year, calling the executive order “ill-advised, unnecessary and destructive.”. “We did so for two reasons,” he explained. “One is we have a lot of individuals from all over the world who come to the Getty Center to do scientific and art historical work that advances our understanding and appreciation of the artistic legacy of humankind. “It’s also for people who live in Los Angeles, who may be undocumented, that come to the Getty Center as part of their community, and by doing so, their community is enhanced, and their sense of themselves is enhanced.”.
“We embrace the fact that art has never known boundaries,” he added, “It’s a resource that should be shared with a broad spectrum of people, A few minutes later, a group of second-graders from John Muir Academy in Long Beach exit the museum, talking excitedly, “I liked the painting of the guy who was a king,” said one student, “I liked the sculpture of a guy and another guy reading a book,” ballet shoes sketch easy said another, “My favorite part of the day was the tram,” said a third student, “I’m definitely coming back.”..