J. Paul Getty Museum

Alternative names
Dates:
Active 1980
Active 2004
Americans
English

History notes:

The development of the PhotoArchive/ Library began in the earliest years of the development of the J. Paul Getty Museum during the mid- to late-1950s. Since 1983 the Photo Archive/Library has been part of the Getty Research Institute.

From the description of Photo Archive budget information, 1976-1979. (Getty Research Institute). WorldCat record id: 85173571

After considering various options for expanding his ranch house in Pacific Palisades, California, which had served as a private museum since 1954, J. Paul Getty decided in the fall of 1968 to build a new museum on the same property. The new museum was designed in the form of a first-century Roman country house, based primarily on the plans of the ancient Villa dei Papiri just outside of Herculaneum. Construction began on December 21, 1970, and the museum, commonly called the "Getty Villa," opened to the public on January 16, 1974.

From the description of Getty Villa construction records, 1960, 1964, 1968-1986, undated, (bulk 1971-1974) (Getty Research Institute). WorldCat record id: 85173109

The J. Paul Getty Museum was established as a charitable trust in 1953 by oil tycoon J. Paul Getty in order to house his growing art collections. Getty had been collecting art since the 1930s. The J. Paul Getty Museum originally opened in 1954, with relatively little publicity, in two rooms of Mr. Getty's Ranch House in the Pacific Palisades near Malibu, California. By August 1955 the museum in the Ranch House had six gallery areas. In 1956 Mr. Getty began planning a new antiquities gallery, which was completed and opened to the public in mid-December 1957. Each year the number of museum visitors increased, and though Mr. Getty curtailed his art acquisitions activities beginning in 1958, the museum continued to grow.

In the fall of 1968, after considering various options for expanding the Ranch House, Getty decided to build a separate museum facility on the same property. This new museum was designed in the form of a first-century Roman country house, based primarily on the plans of the ancient Villa dei Papiri just outside of Herculaneum, Italy. The new museum facility opened to the public on January 16, 1974. Although Getty retained the title of Museum Director over the years, he never left his home in England to visit the new museum building, effectively making the Museum Curator or Deputy Director the on-site director. Getty monitored every expense and purchase made by the museum, and staff regularly traveled to Sutton Place, his home outside London, to consult with him on museum matters.

J. Paul Getty died in 1976 without ever seeing his new museum. Much to everyone's surprise Getty bequeathed almost his entire estate to the museum with a mission to promote "the diffusion of artistic and general knowledge." In 1981, when it became clear that the estate funds would soon be available, Harold M. Williams was hired as the first President of the museum trust. The trust then began a year of exploration to determine where it would focus its resources and energies in order to make the greatest possible contribution to the field of art and art history as a whole. The expansion of the Museum's collections combined with the new programs proposed by the trust would require a facility beyond what the Villa site could accommodate. In 1983 the estate funds became available, the trust's name was officially changed from the J. Paul Getty Museum Trust to the J. Paul Getty Trust, and the museum retained the name the J. Paul Getty Museum. The following year Richard Meier & Partners was chosen to design the Getty Center to house the trust, its newly created programs, and a second site for the Museum.

The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Center, which opened to the public in 1997, houses European paintings, drawings, sculpture, illuminated manuscripts, decorative arts, and European and American photographs. The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Villa underwent extensive renovation and expansion from 1997-2006 and reopened to the public on January 28, 2006. The Villa houses works of art from the Museum's collection of Greek, Roman, and Etruscan antiquities. The J. Paul Getty Museum seeks to further knowledge of the visual arts by collecting, preserving, exhibiting and interpreting works of art of the highest quality. The Center and the Villa serve diverse audiences through the Museum's permanent collection, changing exhibitions, conservation, scholarship, research, and public programs.

From the description of Exhibition photographs, 1980-2004, (bulk 1990-2004) (Getty Research Institute). WorldCat record id: 226398948

The J. Paul Getty Museum and the J. Paul Getty Trust date to 1953, when J. Paul Getty established the museum as a California charitable trust to house his growing art collections. The museum originally opened in 1954 with two rooms and relatively little publicity, but by August 1955 it had 6 gallery areas. In 1956 plans were begun to construct a new antiquities gallery, which was opened to the public in mid-December 1957 and in September 1960 the galleries underwent a minor remodel. The numbers of visitors increased, and though Getty stopped most purchasing in and around 1958, the museum continued to slowly expand into other parts of the Ranch House until, in the late 1960's, he chose to build the Villa Museum.

Dr. W.R. Valentiner was the first director and curator of the J. Paul Getty Museum from 1953 to March 1, 1955, though he served on the Board of Trustees until his death in 1958. Dr. Paul Wescher became the next curator of the museum in April/May 1954 and served until 1959. Wescher never used the title "Director," only that of "Curator," and it seems likely, though the record is not specific, that J. Paul Getty himself took on the title of "Director." Following Wescher's resignation, Norris Bramlett (a museum trustee and Getty Oil accountant who regularly acted as a moderator between J. Paul Getty and the museum) suggested to Getty that the museum did not need a full-time curator and proposed simply hiring someone with an art history background who knew the collection and proposed that the current museum secretary, Mrs. Anne Marian Jones could fulfill this role [memo from NB to JPG, April 9, 1959]. Jones submitted her resignation on February 6, 1965, effective May 31, 1965, and urged that Burton F. Fredericksen be appointed her successor. Fredericksen served as museum curator from 1965 to 1971 (prior to the hiring of Gillian Wilson as curator of decorative arts), as chief museum curator from 1972 to October 1973 (prior to the hiring of Stephen Garrett as deputy director in 1973), and as curator of paintings from October 1973 to 1984.

From the description of Administration records, 1950-1986, undated. (Getty Research Institute). WorldCat record id: 123408061

The Department of Academic Affairs was created in 1978 to act as a liaison between the J. Paul Getty Museum, other museums, scholarly institutions, and individuals concerned with the study of art history and conservation. It was intended to maximize the full educational potential of all departments in the Museum and to propose and administer scholarly programs and projects. (The department was not charged with the education of the general public or of primary and secondary school students, which was instead the concern of the Department of Public Information at the time.) In 1986 Academic Affairs was merged into the Education Department, which was thereafter known as "Education and Academic Affairs" until the "Academic Affairs" was finally dropped from the title.

Under the guest scholar and visiting conservator programs, specific curatorial programs and conservation departments sponsored guest scholars or conservators for long-term residence and study at the Museum or for week-long seminars and consultation. The Education Department continued to operate the Museum Scholar program until that function was transferred to the Getty Research Institute's Department of Research and Education in 1997 (starting with the 1997-1998 Scholar Year).

From the description of Guest scholar and conservator files, 1978-2005. (Getty Research Institute). WorldCat record id: 664372129

Biography/Administrative History

The J. Paul Getty Museum was established as a charitable trust in 1953 by billionaire J. Paul Getty in order to house his growing art collections. Getty had been collecting art since the 1930s. The J. Paul Getty Museum originally opened in 1954, with relatively little publicity, in two rooms of Mr. Getty's Ranch House in the Pacific Palisades near Malibu, California. By August 1955 the museum in the Ranch House had six gallery areas. In 1956 Mr. Getty began planning a new antiquities gallery, which was completed and opened to the public in mid-December 1957. Each year the number of museum visitors increased, and though Mr. Getty curtailed his art acquisitions activities beginning in 1958, the museum continued to grow.

In the fall of 1968, after considering various options for expanding the Ranch House, Getty decided to build a separate museum facility on the same property. This new museum was designed in the form of a first-century Roman country house, based primarily on the plans of the ancient Villa dei Papiri just outside of Herculaneum, Italy. The new museum facility opened to the public on January 16, 1974. Although Getty retained the title of Museum Director over the years, he never left his home in England to visit the new museum building, effectively making the Museum Curator or Deputy Director the on-site director. Getty monitored every expense and purchase made by the museum, and staff regularly traveled to Sutton Place, his home outside London, to consult with him on museum matters.

J. Paul Getty died in 1976 without ever seeing his new museum. Much to everyone's surprise Getty bequeathed almost his entire estate to the museum with a mission to promote “the diffusion of artistic and general knowledge." In 1981, when it became clear that the estate funds would soon be available, Harold M. Williams was hired as the first President of the museum trust. The trust then began a year of exploration to determine where it would focus its resources and energies in order to make the greatest possible contribution to the field of art and art history as a whole. The expansion of the Museum’s collections combined with the new programs proposed by the trust would require a facility beyond what the Villa site could accommodate. In 1983 the estate funds became available, the trust's name was officially changed from the J. Paul Getty Museum Trust to the J. Paul Getty Trust, and the museum retained the name the J. Paul Getty Museum. The following year Richard Meier & Partners was chosen to design the Getty Center to house the trust, its newly created programs, and a second site for the Museum.

Today the J. Paul Getty Trust is an international cultural and philanthropic organization serving both general audiences and specialized professionals. The Trust is a not-for-profit institution, educational in purpose and character, that focuses on the visual arts in all of their dimensions. As of 2009 the Trust supports and oversees four programs: the Getty Foundation; the Getty Conservation Institute; and the Getty Research Institute; and J. Paul Getty Museum. The Museum serves a wide variety of audiences through its expanded range of exhibitions and programming in the visual arts from two locations in the Los Angeles area: the Getty Villa near Malibu and the Getty Center in Brentwood.

The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Center, which opened to the public in 1997, houses European paintings, drawings, sculpture, illuminated manuscripts, decorative arts, and European and American photographs. The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Villa underwent extensive renovation and expansion from 1997-2006 and reopened to the public on January 28, 2006. The Villa houses works of art from the Museum's collection of Greek, Roman, and Etruscan antiquities. The J. Paul Getty Museum seeks to further knowledge of the visual arts by collecting, preserving, exhibiting and interpreting works of art of the highest quality. The Center and the Villa serve diverse audiences through the Museum's permanent collection, changing exhibitions, conservation, scholarship, research, and public programs.

The Department of Academic Affairs was created in 1978 to act as a liaison between the J. Paul Getty Museum, other museums, scholarly institutions, and individuals concerned with the study of art history and conservation. It was intended to maximize the full educational potential of all departments in the Museum and to propose and administer scholarly programs and projects. (The department was not charged with the education of the general public or of primary and secondary school students, which was instead the concern of the Department of Public Information at the time.) In 1986 Academic Affairs was merged into the Education Department, which was thereafter known as "Education and Academic Affairs" until the "Academic Affairs" was finally dropped from the title.

Under the guest scholar and visiting conservator programs, specific curatorial programs and conservation departments sponsored guest scholars or conservators for long-term residence and study at the Museum or for week-long seminars and consultation. The Education Department continued to operate the Museum Scholar program until that function was transferred to the Getty Research Institute's Department of Research and Education in 1997 (starting with the 1997-1998 Scholar Year).

From the guide to the Guest scholar and conservator files, 1978-2005, (The Getty Research Institute Institutional Records and Archives 1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 1100 Los Angeles, California, 90049-1688 (310) 440-7390 archives@getty.edu)

Administrative History

After considering various options for expanding his ranch house in Malibu California which had served as a private museum since 1954, J. Paul Getty decided in the fall of 1968 to build a new museum on the same property, in the form of a first-century Roman country house, based primarily on the plans of the ancient Villa dei Papiri just outside of Herculaneum. The archaeologist Norman Neuerburg, who had studied the ruins of Herculaneum and was an authority on Roman domestic architecture, was retained as a consultant for the project. The Santa Monica firm Langdon & Wilson was hired as architect, and Stephen Garrett, who had served as Getty’s consultant in the remodeling of a Getty home in Posillipo, Italy, was retained as overseer of the construction. Landscape architect Emmet Wemple designed the gardens, Garth Benton worked on the murals, and Bruce Ptolomy worked on the fountains. The construction itself was done by Dinwiddie Construction Co., with various subcontractors. Construction began on December 21, 1970, and the new museum opened to the public on January 16, 1974. Despite the enthusiastic public response, mixed critical response questioned the decision to recreate an ancient building.

Upon the death of Mr. Getty and the subsequent establishment of the J. Paul Getty Trust, the Getty Villa became part of a larger vision. The Villa was redesigned by architects Machado and Silvetti Associates and reopened in 2006. While most of the Museum's collections are housed at the Getty Center in Los Angeles, the antiquities collection is still housed at the Villa. The Getty Villa serves a varied audience through the permanent collection, changing exhibitions, conservation, scholarship, research, and public programs in an intimate setting overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Public and scholarly programs at the Villa include lectures, seminars, conferences, workshops, symposia, film series, musical concerts, and theatrical performances in the Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman Outdoor Classical Theater.

From the guide to the Getty Villa construction records, 1960, 1964, 1968-1986, undated (bulk 1971-1974), (The Getty Research Institute Institutional Records and Archives 1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 1100 Los Angeles, California, 90049-1688 (310) 440-7390 archives@getty.edu)

Administrative History

The J. Paul Getty Museum was established as a charitable trust in 1953 by oil tycoon J. Paul Getty in order to house his growing art collections. Getty had been collecting art since the 1930s. The J. Paul Getty Museum originally opened in 1954, with relatively little publicity, in two rooms of Mr. Getty's Ranch House in the Pacific Palisades near Malibu, California. By August 1955 the museum in the Ranch House had six gallery areas. In 1956 Mr. Getty began planning a new antiquities gallery, which was completed and opened to the public in mid-December 1957. Each year the number of museum visitors increased, and though Mr. Getty curtailed his art acquisitions activities beginning in 1958, the museum continued to grow.

In the fall of 1968, after considering various options for expanding the Ranch House, Getty decided to build a separate museum facility on the same property. This new museum was designed in the form of a first-century Roman country house, based primarily on the plans of the ancient Villa dei Papiri just outside of Herculaneum, Italy. The new museum facility opened to the public on January 16, 1974. Although Getty retained the title of Museum Director over the years, he never left his home in England to visit the new museum building, effectively making the Museum Curator or Deputy Director the on-site director. Getty monitored every expense and purchase made by the museum, and staff regularly traveled to Sutton Place, his home outside London, to consult with him on museum matters.

J. Paul Getty died in 1976 without ever seeing his new museum. Much to everyone's surprise Getty bequeathed almost his entire estate to the museum with a mission to promote “the diffusion of artistic and general knowledge." In 1981, when it became clear that the estate funds would soon be available, Harold M. Williams was hired as the first President of the museum trust. The trust then began a year of exploration to determine where it would focus its resources and energies in order to make the greatest possible contribution to the field of art and art history as a whole. The expansion of the Museum’s collections combined with the new programs proposed by the trust would require a facility beyond what the Villa site could accommodate. In 1983 the estate funds became available, the trust's name was officially changed from the J. Paul Getty Museum Trust to the J. Paul Getty Trust, and the museum retained the name the J. Paul Getty Museum. The following year Richard Meier & Partners was chosen to design the Getty Center to house the trust, its newly created programs, and a second site for the Museum.

Today the J. Paul Getty Trust is an international cultural and philanthropic organization serving both general audiences and specialized professionals. The Trust is a not-for-profit institution, educational in purpose and character, that focuses on the visual arts in all of their dimensions. As of 2009 the Trust supports and oversees four programs: the Getty Foundation; the Getty Conservation Institute; and the Getty Research Institute; and J. Paul Getty Museum. The Museum serves a wide variety of audiences through its expanded range of exhibitions and programming in the visual arts from two locations in the Los Angeles area: the Getty Villa near Malibu and the Getty Center in Brentwood.

The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Center, which opened to the public in 1997, houses European paintings, drawings, sculpture, illuminated manuscripts, decorative arts, and European and American photographs. The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Villa underwent extensive renovation and expansion from 1997-2006 and reopened to the public on January 28, 2006. The Villa houses works of art from the Museum's collection of Greek, Roman, and Etruscan antiquities. The J. Paul Getty Museum seeks to further knowledge of the visual arts by collecting, preserving, exhibiting and interpreting works of art of the highest quality. The Center and the Villa serve diverse audiences through the Museum's permanent collection, changing exhibitions, conservation, scholarship, research, and public programs.

From the guide to the Exhibition photographs, 1980-2004 (bulk 1990-2004), (The Getty Research Institute Institutional Records and Archives 1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 1100 Los Angeles, California, 90049-1688 (310) 440-7390 archives@getty.edu)

Administrative History

The J. Paul Getty Museum was established as a charitable trust in 1953 by oil tycoon J. Paul Getty in order to house his growing art collections. The J. Paul Getty Museum originally opened in 1954 in two rooms of Mr. Getty's Ranch House in the Pacific Palisades near Malibu, California. Each year the number of museum visitors increased, and though Mr. Getty curtailed his art acquisitions activities beginning in 1958, the museum continued to grow. The development of the library began during the mid to late 1950s primarily to meet the needs of Museum curators. In the early years the library was located in the curator's office between the Ranch House and the Conservation area.

In the fall of 1968 Mr. Getty decided to build a separate museum facility on the Ranch House property. The new museum facility, later referred to as the Getty Villa, opened to the public on January 16, 1974. The library moved to the basement of the Villa upon completion of the building. In 1983 the Museum received J. Paul Getty's estate funds, the trust's name was officially changed from the J. Paul Getty Museum Trust to the J. Paul Getty Trust, and the museum retained the name the J. Paul Getty Museum. In an effort to contribute to the field of art and art history the Trust developed several programs. In 1983 the library began by the Museum in the 1950s became part of the program the Getty Center for the History of Art and the Humanities (GCHAH). The GCHAH was later renamed the Getty Research Institute (GRI). Today the GRI is home to one of the largest art libraries in the world.

From the guide to the Library inventory and accession records, 1954-1965, 1977, (The Getty Research Institute Institutional Records and Archives 1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 1100 Los Angeles, California, 90049-1688 (310) 440-7390 archives@getty.edu)

Loading...

Loading Relationships

Information

Permalink:
http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6g48w27
Ark ID:
w6g48w27
SNAC ID:
51058284

Subjects:

  • Museum finance
  • Photography of art
  • Museums--Acquisitions
  • Art museums--Educational aspects
  • Nonprofit organizations--Employees
  • Nonprofit organizations
  • Theft from museums
  • Museums--Trials, litigation, etc
  • Art--Handling
  • Art museums--Exhibitions
  • Nonprofit organizations--Trials, litigation, etc
  • Art museums--Design and construction
  • Art museum architecture
  • Building--Details
  • Architecture--Decision making
  • Liability insurance
  • Art museums--Library resources
  • Landscape construction
  • Conflict of interests
  • Building--Equipment and supplies
  • Building designers
  • Decorative art
  • Building sites--Planning
  • Landscape gardening
  • Art--Exhibitions
  • Budget
  • Nonprofit organizations--Taxation
  • Licenses
  • Art--Conservation and restoration
  • Nonprofit organizations--Insurance
  • Building--Estimates
  • Architecture--Designs and plans
  • Nonprofit organizations--Accounting
  • Architecture--Roman influences
  • Art museums--Maintenance and repair
  • Museum libraries
  • Art museums
  • Art insurance
  • Art museums--Employees
  • Museums--Collections management
  • Art--Provenance
  • Art--Exhibition techniques
  • Museum visitors
  • Zoning
  • Buildings--Specifications
  • Art--Collectors and collecting
  • Museums--Management
  • Learning and scholarship
  • Bibliography
  • Art historians--Research
  • Employee fringe benefit
  • Contractors' operations
  • Museum trustees
  • Museums
  • Nonprofit organizations--Finance
  • Art Forgeries
  • Art--Protection
  • Art objects--Conservation and restoration
  • Gifts
  • Art objects--Collectors and collecting
  • Nonprofit organizations--Buildings
  • Building materials
  • Art--Packing
  • Buildings--Repair and reconstruction
  • Servitudes
  • Museums--Security measures
  • Buildings--Environmental engineering

Occupations:

not available for this record

Functions:

  • Administration of nonprofit organizations
  • Management of art museums

Places:

  • Malibu (Calif.) (as recorded)
  • Pacific Palisades (Los Angeles, Calif.) (as recorded)
  • Malibu (Calif.) (as recorded)