8444 - J. Paul Getty Museum begins reinstallation of antiquities collection at the Getty Villa - Los Angeles


Once completed, the new display will allow visitors to follow the historical development of classical art.
Beginning January 3, 2017, the process of reinstalling the antiquities collection at the Getty Villa will start, shifting from its current thematic organization to a largely chronological, art historical presentation. The Villa will remain open with normal operating hours throughout the reinstallation, which has been planned so that at least half the galleries will stay on view at any given time. The reinstallation will be complete in spring 2018.
Regular public programming and gallery, garden and architecture tours will continue throughout the reinstallation, and be adjusted as needed to accommodate the work. Beginning in March, the Museum will offer special daily events and activities highlighting life in ancient times.

Once completed, the new display will allow visitors to follow the historical development of classical art, and understand the evolution of styles within and interactions between the Etruscan, Greek, and Roman cultures from the Bronze Age through the Late Roman Empire (ca. 3,000 BC– A.D. 600). This arrangement will allow the extraordinary artistic quality of the most important objects in the collection, such as the Statue of a Victorious Youth, to become more visually apparent in the context of other material of similar date and style.

Explains Timothy Potts, director of the Getty Museum. “Greek art evolved from its ‘geometrical’ beginnings to the first fully naturalistic style of representation in the Hellenistic period, and how the Romans adopted and adapted this legacy in the first centuries A.D., forming the basis for much of later European art and architecture up to the present day. You can’t understand why an object is the way it is unless you understand how an artist may have been influenced by what came before, and how style, iconography, and technology evolved.”

Potts adds, “Another important part of understanding the ancient Mediterranean world is to recognize the exchanges and influences that passed between the various cultures and neighboring civilizations. The new installation will include a gallery dedicated to presenting the ‘Classical World in Context,’ showcasing long-term loans, primarily from other museums, of objects from the Middle East and other cultures that engaged with ancient Greece and Italy. In this way our visitors will be better able to appreciate both the distinctive achievements of the classical world and the role played by these interconnections.”

With almost 3,000 square feet more gallery space, the new installation will feature a number of large and important objects that have been in storage for many years. Highlights include first-century AD frescoes from the Villa of Numerius Popidius Florus at Boscoreale, many more large-scale Roman sculptures, including the Getty’s Statue of a Female Figure, which will have been reunited with its head, acquired by the Getty in June of this year, and a treasure of jewelry and silver from ancient Bactria (modern-day eastern Iran and Afghanistan).

The Villa will also feature a larger Family Forum and upgraded lighting and WiFi. The outer peristyle pool, which has been emptied to conserve water during California’s drought, will undergo maintenance and again be filled with water in fall 2017.

Throughout reinstallation, visitors can plan their trips to the Villa by visiting www.getty.edu/villa2018, which will provide updates on the accessible galleries and garden areas.

Beginning in the spring, the Villa will feature special daily programs focusing on everyday life in ancient times. Activities will take place throughout the site and will include hands-on experiences, music, art-making, and more. Look for an announcement of upcoming events early in the year.