When it comes to art, there are many places to visit in Los Angeles, but only one has such a breathtaking collection of visual arts—the J. Paul Getty Museum. Since opening its doors in 1997, the museum has welcomed over 14 million people, and houses extraordinary historic collections of European art, sculptures, illuminated manuscripts, drawings, and photographs.
The Getty Center was established by Jean Paul Getty, an American industrialist. It began as a collection of notable works of art in the early 1930’s, and grew to a modest museum in Getty’s ranch house in Pacific Palisades by the early 1950’s. Today, the Getty Center comprises the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Getty Research Institute, the Getty Conservation Institute, and the Getty Foundation. These institutions fund widespread research programs to educate its visitors on dramatic and historic exhibitions, and enrich the community’s knowledge of art.
The grounds of the museum are absolutely stunning. Six buildings surround an idyllic central courtyard filled with sculptures of Greek and Roman antiquity. It is one of my favorite museums to visit because it is such a cultural experience. By the time you are through you really feel as though you have gotten a glimpse of an ancient world portrayed through gorgeous sculptures and works of art both inside and out.
The Getty website includes an event calendar that lists performances, lectures, tours, and family activities to partake in, which deems it an ideal place to take the family on the weekend. Admission is free, and parking is $15 except after 5pm, or during mid-week evening events. They also have great little cafes to lunch in that overlook the Central Garden which is a real treat. It is definitely one of the more cultural places to visit in Los Angeles, and you do not have to be an art fan to enjoy it!
The Getty Center
1200 Getty Center Drive
Los Angeles, California 90049