Getty Center Sunset at the entrance

Surprisingly, with many trips to Los Angeles in the last 15 years I had never been to the Getty Center. This past weekend, in Los Angeles to visit family and friends, Amethyst and I visited the Getty.

We began by taking the slow-moving tram from the parking structure up to the main plaza. As it winds up the hill, we could see great views of Los Angeles.

Getty Center Sculpture

We walked up the sculpture garden steps from the plaza.

Getty Center Sunset Light

The end of day light on the buildings turned them a deep gold.

Getty Center River Bed

The paths zig-zag down and have many surprising elements around each turn. The dry river beds were especially interesting. I believe the water has been turned off because of the current drought.

Getty Center Azalea Maze

At the bottom of the path is a pool which contains a labyrinth made of floating azaleas.

Getty Center Datura Tree

The planted areas are quite wonderful. We saw many varieties of succulents, perennials and many flowering plants. Perhaps my favorite is the Datura tree which still had many blooms.

Sunset from the Getty Center

After sunset we visited a fascinating exhibit of World War I European art, almost all of which we had never seen before.

As we headed back to the tram with our family, we noticed the whimsical stars projected on the walls and pathways which you can see in the complete gallery/slideshow below.

We will certainly be going back on our next visit and take a long walk through the art collection.

History of the J. Paul Getty Trust

J. Paul Getty viewed art as a civilizing influence in society and strongly believed in making art available to the public for its education and enjoyment. Acting on this belief, he gave significant pieces to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art starting in 1948.

In 1953, he decided to establish his own museum to provide public access to his personal collection. He opened the J. Paul Getty Museum to the public in 1954. This small museum, established in his ranch house in Malibu (today, Pacific Palisades), housed collections of Greek and Roman antiquities, 18th-century French furniture, and European paintings.

Most of Mr. Getty’s personal estate passed to the Trust in 1982, after his death in 1976.

During his lifetime and thereafter, Mr. Getty’s philanthropy enabled the construction of the Villa in Pacific Palisades and the Getty Center in Brentwood, the expansion of the collections of the Museum, and the creation of the Getty Conservation Institute, the Getty Research Institute, and the Getty Foundation.

Be sure to click the thumbnail to open up full screen and view slide show.