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Eclectic Mix of Exhibitions and Events Usher in the New Season

Highlights Range from Sculpture and Photography Displays to Performances of Jazz, Roots Music, and a Korean Epic Drama

Parking Reservations No Longer Needed

September 26, 2003

Los Angeles—Fall into the Getty Center's mix of new exhibitions, thrilling live performances, and family events.  The new season's highlights offer something for everyone.

Come face to face—literally—with George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Voltaire, Molière, Denis Diderot, and other heroes of the Enlightenment; discover what photographs were like at the turn of the century; or take a close-up look at stained glass that once decorated homes and churches in medieval and the Renaissance Europe.  Outside the Museum galleries, the Getty experience continues with an offering of mostly FREE performances featuring the country's top talents in music and drama.  To usher in the season, the Getty introduces its new no-reservations parking policy.  Now, visitors no longer need to make parking reservations.  Admission to the Getty Center is always FREE.  So stop by the Getty and bring the family. 

One of the year's most important exhibitions will open this fall.  The Getty Premiere Presentation Jean-Antoine Houdon: Sculptor of the Enlightenment (November 4, 2003–January 25, 2004) introduces visitors to Houdon's gallery of great men. Widely acknowledged as the greatest sculptor of the 18th century, Houdon created many of the iconic images of famous figures we recognize today, from Benjamin Franklin and George Washington to François Voltaire and Denis Diderot.  Highlighting the exhibition is a new Getty acquisition, the recently rediscovered bust of Marie-Sébastien-Charles-François Fontaine de Biré that had been 'lost' for over 200 years.

From the Getty's photography department, the major fall show is Julia Margaret Cameron, Photographer (October 21, 2003–January 11, 2004), an important retrospective of works from the pioneering female Victorian photographer.  The Getty is the only U.S. venue for this international touring exhibition.  Also on view is Images in Light: Recently Acquired Stained Glass (October 28, 2003–April 4, 2004), which introduces the Getty's new collection of stunning medieval and Renaissance stained glass to the public.

 Fall events offer a wide range of experiences to Getty audiences.   The popular Friday Nights at the Getty series returns this fall with a special performance by Grammy-nominated jazz vocalist Kurt Elling and concerts by roots singer-songwriter Pieta Brown, the idiosyncratic composer-singer Joe Henry, and the L.A. chamber-music ensemble XTET.  Also coming to the Getty stage are a cross-cultural production of the Korean musical drama Shim Ch’ong: A Korean Folk Talk and the Long Beach Opera’s retelling of Freshwater, a comic tale based on Virginia Woolf’s only play.


Transforming Tradition: Ancient Motifs in Medieval Manuscripts

This fascinating exhibition explores how manuscript illuminators in the Middle Ages borrowed themes and motifs from ancient Greek and Roman culture and turned them to their own uses. By pairing ancient objects with medieval manuscripts from the Getty's permanent collection, the display illustrates how manuscript illuminators responded to the heritage of antiquity.
September 23–November 30, 2003

The Making of Furniture
Part of the popular "Making of" series, which explores the historical techniques behind various art forms, this exhibition illustrates the methods utilized in the production of a piece of 18th-century French furniture. It focuses on an elaborate marquetry writing table by Jean-François Oeben. Featured are copies of the original table in different stages of completion, to illustrate the entire process.  The exhibition also displays period drawings for pieces of furniture, marquetry designs, the interior of cabinetmaking workshops, and information about cabinetmakers' shops in 18th-century Paris.
Opens October 7, 2003

Julia Margaret Cameron, Photographer
Some 100 rare photographs by Julia Margaret Cameron (British, 1815–1879), one of the most important figures in the history of photography, will be on view in this retrospective featuring Cameron's best work drawn from collections in Europe and the United States. Cameron came to photography in mid-life, and quickly excelled in the art form, which offered Victorian women the rare opportunity to achieve professional recognition. This is a loan exhibition organized by the National Portrait Gallery, London, and the National Museum of Photography, Film & Television, Bradford. The Getty is the third and final venue for this presentation.
October 21, 2003–January 11, 2004

Images in Light: Newly Acquired Stained Glass
The Getty Center recently acquired an outstanding collection of medieval and Renaissance stained glass, making it the major repository of stained glass in the western United States.  This exhibition will be the public’s first chance to view more than 20 of the finest pieces in the collection, lit from behind to showcase their magnificent color and detail.  Stained glass represented the most preeminent form of monumental painting in medieval northern Europe.  The pieces on view span the 13th through 16th centuries, vividly illustrating the technological innovation and stylistic change that distinguish the greatest period of European stained glass.
October 28, 2003–April 4, 2004

Jean-Antoine Houdon: Sculptor of the Enlightenment
The unparalleled work of Jean-Antoine Houdon (1741–1828) is rediscovered in the first major international exhibition devoted to one of the most prominent and versatile sculptors in 18th-century France. The sculptor created the iconic images of such early American statesmen as Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, and George Washington, and established the authoritative portraits of leading personalities of the French Enlightenment, including François Voltaire, Denis Diderot, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. The exhibition features Houdon's early works, garden statues, and more than 40 portraits in terracotta, plaster, bronze, and marble.
November 4, 2003–January 25, 2004

Casting Characters: Portraits and Studies of Heads
Artists throughout history have been fascinated with the human face, as seen in the numerous portraits, caricatures, and expressive heads featured in this exhibition. Whether these drawn faces were destined to become portraits or figures in a narrative composition, artists strove to create effective characters and personalities in their studies of vivid facial expression. The variety of works on view showcase the breadth of the Getty's collections with examples that span the 16th through 19th centuries. Featured are a number of recent acquisitions.
November 4, 2003–February 1, 2004

Comic Art: The Paris Salon in Caricature
Through the genre of caricature, this exhibition explores the world of artists, critics, dealers, exhibitions, and the art public in 19th-century Paris. Selections from the Research Library's caricature collection lampoon the Paris Salon as a social event and "proving-ground" for artists, illustrate aesthetic debates between academic traditions and the painting of modern life, and satirize the transformation of art into a commercial object.
November 18, 2003–February 15, 2004

Call 310-440-7300 for tickets, reservations and information. All performances take place in the Getty Center’s Harold M. Williams Auditorium unless otherwise noted.

FRIDAY NIGHTS AT THE GETTY this fall features four adventurous performances. 
FREE; reservations required (limit 4 seats per reservation).

Joe Henry
Composer-singer-producer Joe Henry’s visionary songwriting talents resist categories and defy all expectations.  He brings his smoky voice and pop-rock-jazz-country blend to the Getty for an evening of adventurous music.
Reservations available beginning September 25.
Friday, October 3, 2003 at 7:30 p.m.

The noted L.A.-based chamber ensemble XTET presents a performance of Arnold Schoenberg’s Pierrot lunaire , one of the most influential examples of 20th-century musical Expressionism.  The program also includes works by Robert Schumann and György Kurtág.
Reservations available beginning September 25.
Friday, October 17, 2003 at 7:30 p.m.

Shim Ch’ong: A Korean Folk Tale
Renowned p’ansori* artist Chan E. Park leads a cross-cultural ensemble in a musical retelling of an ancient Korean tale: a virtuous girl sacrifices herself to cure her father’s blindness.  Adapted by Doug Kaback. Based on an English translation of the P’ansori song by Marshall R. Pihl. Presented in partnership with the California State University Northridge Theater Department and the Korean Cultural Center.  (*P’ansori : Korean narrative-epic vocal music, performed to the accompaniment of a small drum.)
FREE; reservations required (limit 4 seats per reservation).
Friday–Saturday, October 24–25, 2003 at 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

Long Beach Opera: Freshwater
Presented in conjunction with the exhibition Julia Margaret Cameron, Photographer, this performance is based on Virginia Woolf’s only play, Freshwater .  It takes a comical look at the life and times of the great Victorian photographer Cameron, who was Woolf’s great-aunt.  Tickets are $45.
Friday–Sunday, November 14–16, 2003

French Music from the Age of the Enlightenment
Featuring the Aulos Ensemble
Performing on original period instruments, the Aulos Ensemble presents a concert inspired by the exhibition Jean-Antoine Houdon: Sculptor of the Enlightenment . Tickets are $20 ($15 students and seniors).
Saturday, November 22, 2003 at 8 p.m.

Note to Editors: Images available on request. For more information, the public can call 310-7300 or visit

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About the Getty:

The J. Paul Getty Trust is an international cultural and philanthropic institution devoted to the visual arts that features the Getty Conservation Institute, the Getty Foundation, the J. Paul Getty Museum, and the Getty Research Institute. The J. Paul Getty Trust and Getty programs serve a varied audience from two locations: the Getty Center in Los Angeles and the Getty Villa in Malibu.

Sign up for e-Getty at to receive free monthly highlights of events at the Getty Center and the Getty Villa via e-mail, or visit our event calendar for a complete calendar of public programs.

Visiting the Getty Villa: The Getty Villa is open Wednesday through Monday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is closed Tuesday and major holidays. Admission to the Getty Villa is always free. A ticket is required for admission. Tickets can be ordered in advance, or on the day of your visit, at or at 310-440-7300. Parking is $15 per car, but free after 5pm for evening events. Groups of 15 or more must make reservations by phone. For more information, call 310-440-7300 (English or Spanish); 310-440-7305 (TTY line for the deaf or hearing impaired). The Getty Villa is at 17985 Pacific Coast Highway, Pacific Palisades, California.