Getty Center

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Getty Center - Museum in Los Angeles.
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INFO The Getty Center in Brentwood, Los Angeles, was donated and founded by J. Paul Getty as part of the J. Paul Getty Trust. The Getty Center is comprised of the well-known J. Paul Getty Museum, the Getty Research Institute... ... read more

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    1200 Getty Center Drive
    Los Angeles, CA 90049

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Getty Center Information

Getty Center - Museum in Los Angeles.

The Getty Center in Brentwood, Los Angeles, was donated and founded by J. Paul Getty as part of the J. Paul Getty Trust. The Getty Center is comprised of the well-known J. Paul Getty Museum, the Getty Research Institute, The Getty Conservation Institute, and the Getty Foundation. This $1.3 billion Center opened in 1997 and is one of the most prominent institutes in Southern California. The Getty Center is perched on top of a steep hill and offers one of the most picturesque views in all of the Los Angeles area.

The Getty Museum began as a small wing in J. Paul Getty’s house in the 1950s and now displays some of the most celebrated artistic works of the 19th and 20th centuries. The art is organized chronologically and clockwise starting in the North pavilion and walking through the Getty is like traveling through an artistic time capsule – breath taking and surreal.

Notable exhibitions at the Getty Museum include Aphrodite and the Gods of Love, Ten Years in Focus: The Artist and the Camera, and the Art of Empire. The Getty Museum draws about 1.3 million visitors each year.

Getty Center dabbles in the art of music as well by hosting a summer concert series on the Getty grounds. Saturdays off the 405 funds one concert each month that is free for the public. Art lovers of all ages can enjoy a day of gazing at beautiful artwork and then catching the evening show.

The Central Garden at the Getty Center is also well-worth visiting. The garden exudes its own artistic charm, with a carefully constructed water stream that flows down to a flower-filled pool.

Getty Center User Reviews

Average rating:
A great place you can't miss
Yingjia C. Aug 14, 2013
If you're new to LA, Getty Center is a great cultural and scenic place where you will find a different charming LA. You'll enjoy walking through the impressive collections of arts, having a coffee or lunch in the yard surrounded by water springs, sculptures, elegant architectures, and green valleys. You will also breath and relax in the delicate garden, decorated with various rare species of flowers and plants. It is such a peaceful and beautiful world hidden in the chaotic and noisy film city. Appreciate art, enjoy nature beauty, and have peaceful time with your friends and family. I'm sure you'll come back again.
Los Angeles at its Best
Benjamin G. Jun 18, 2013
Most Angelinos and first-time "Getty" patrons do not know two things about this hallowed art playground: 1) The Getty was first opened very recently--in 1997. 2) You cannot drive directly to its campus. Knowing how these two anecdotes connect is the key to understanding this space. Here's how it works: The Getty is a very young contributor to the Los Angeles museum arts scene. It's barely 15 years old--likely younger than you are--but still it plays a powerful role with its 1.3 million annual visitors. This is more than LACMA and MoCA Los Angeles combined, at half the age of either institution. So how did it happen? When Richard Meier designed The Getty's 23-acre space in the 1990's, he arranged for it to reside atop a removed Brentwood hilltop, without parking on site but instead providing a scenic tram-ride to reach its campus. His goal? To create a sanctuary of art. Visitors leave their cars, their stresses and the bustling city below as they embark on a sort of artist's rendition of the Islamic Hajj to reach this sacred space. An enormous and diverse collection of pieces that includes the likes of Van Gogh's Irises awaits them, along with delectable cuisine and quaint sun-kissed gardens. The silent view of the metropolis nearby and sea below is the element that tinges all the Getty's offerings with an element of thoughtfulness, inexplicable magic and life. In other words, Meier's design makes a voyage to The Getty a few hours of truly "being there". So, although this museum is unique in its newness and tram-mandatory visits, these changes should be welcomed; they are what give The Getty that timeless air you feel in its bright marbled halls. If you haven't visited yet, be sure to make time. Although most Angelinos are surprised at the two facts I started this review with, all who visit well know how this "Getty air" seems to stay in you long after you've returned home.
Julio D. Jun 18, 2013
Every visit is always a new experience. Not only is the Getty located in such a beautiful location but it overlooks our amazing city of angels. If you are looking for a museum with knowledge, history, art and ambition then this is the right place! $15 for parking and admission is included cannot be beaten in my opinion. Besides the construction happening on Getty Dr. I really recommend this to not only the residents of Los Angeles and Orange but to all tourists visiting!
More Than a Museum
Christine C. May 21, 2013
Even if you're not an art fanatic, the view alone makes the Getty Center worth checking out. During my brief visit to the Getty I did examine some of the art (which was certainly impressive) but I spent the majority of my time there exploring the gardens on the premises and admiring the beautiful views of LA. I certainly plan on returning when I have more time to check out the different galleries. On top of the impressive art and views, the tram ride up to the Getty Center and entrance into the museum are both free so there's really no reason to not go and check it out!
Educational and Sexy!
Gerard Nash G. May 20, 2013
This place is absolutely phenomenal. I visited the center for a high school assignment, and despite having dreaded it at first, I enjoyed the entire experience. The gardens are incredibly beautiful and the artwork and history, contained in the museums, are definitely an amazing view. There's even a garden in the middle of the center that resembles a maze, and there are several diagrams of the museum for those who are interested in the aesthetics of the center. They even a monorail leading up to the center! I would definitely recommend anyone to this place who would enjoy an educational experience that is mixed in with beauty and a great time.
Maggie H. May 16, 2013
It’s gorgeous here! Come here to study, come here on a nice afternoon with some friends, or come here on a cute little date with your significant other. I’m not a big fan of museums, but it’s absolutely beautiful here! I love the gardens outside. I would definitely come back not for the museum portion but for the outdoors. Everyone is always alive and friendly. Kids are always running around and workers are always catering to your needs. It’s very close to the UCLA campus and right off the 405 freeway. There are also nice and upscale restaurants if you’re hungry too.
Kristen D. May 15, 2013
This place is so beautiful. i am not too into museum but this place is beautiful. It is nice to come and walk around and look it at everything the museum offers. This would be a great place to take pretty pictures and get those artsy juices flowing. Outside of the museum is my person favorite. It is so pretty with all the flowers and the luscious grass. Even if you are not into art, you should at least come once to see the beauty. The flowers, water, and laughter of the children running around is amazing and unlike no other. One thing though to take into consideration is Do not go on a Monday because they are closed. I definitely make that mistake once. The getty is so pretty that it should not be missed.
Beautiful exhibits.
Helen L. May 12, 2013
The view is absolutely amazing. Upon arrival, to get to the museum you have to take a tram-like rail system that brings you atop the hill which over looks the busy highway of Los Angeles. The museum is extremely spacious, with many outdoor areas and entirely different wings for different time periods. They have a huge portrait of Louis in his red heels, a great collection of illuminated manuscripts, and Leonardo's sketches. There is a lot of walking to be expected in this museum. The staff are friendly. The cafeteria has good food, but admittedly slightly over priced. Overall, the museum is spectacular and I definitely love coming back.
Absolutely worth it!
Sandra C. May 7, 2013
The Getty Museum has some of the most beautiful gardens I have ever seen. They're an absolutely worthwhile sight. The sculptures and paintings are truly diverse, interesting and appealing to the eye. The Getty Museum is ideal for a field trip, a family outing, or a day out with friends. Without a doubt, one of the best aspects of the Getty Museum is its location. Situated atop a hill, the sight from the Getty Museum is truly breathtaking. Just to add on to the list of reasons for why you'll love the Getty, remember that you'll be able to enjoy a lovely tram ride on your way up.
Exhibits Vary, but a Picnic's Always Good
Sidney H. Apr 9, 2013
Thanks to the consistently beautiful weather in Los Angeles, the Getty Center's gardens are one of the most relaxing and gorgeous places to hang out in the city. If you're willing to pay for the parking (if you're not, bussing it isn't that hard either), a day in the gardens is a day well spent. Bring friends, family, or a boyfriend/girlfriend and enjoy the breathtaking display of technicolor flora. Lay out on the grassy hills, soak in the sun, and bring a picnic. The gardens are always filled with life, and it's great for people watching too. You can even go by yourself and read a book. There's really nothing better. As far as the museum itself, I'd go for the architecture alone. However, the exhibits themselves vary in quality, and unless you are very into the classical paintings and sculptures, there's not much in the permanent exhibits to excite. However, every once in a while something fun and new will come along. Most recently what comes to mind was the Fashion in Los Angeles exhibit. Location is what it's all about for the Getty Center. Getting up to that hill, soaking in the sun, and breathing in the fresh air is worth the occasional line for the tram ride up. Plus, it's free entry to the actual museum so come with a big group split the price of parking.
The Best Museum in LA
Emily B. Mar 27, 2013
The Getty Center is my favorite museum in Los Angeles. I’ve been there dozens of times, held events, and even written two papers about it. Art is represented by many different time periods and styles and the visiting exhibits are always the top. The Julia Margaret Cameron exhibit that I went to when I was little inspired me to become a photographer. Despite my adoration of art, my favorite part of the Getty is the gardens. The gardens themselves are an art piece because it takes careful orchestration to make plants and flowers native to entirely different climates live in harmony side by side. There is always some new secret garden or spot to explore every time I go. The museum makes you feel like you are on top of the world and with the gorgeous view of the city, you may as well be.
Above It All
Jen J. Mar 22, 2013
Look up on the hills above Brentwood and you can see The Getty Center, a beautiful white structure overlooking Los Angeles and the perfect place to go to get above the chaos and noise of the city. The whole feeling of the museum is one of peace and calm, and it’s a wonderful place for picnics, studying or to just take in the amazing views, gardens and art. Visiting the Getty on a clear day is recommended when the views of the city are truly spectacular. You can see for miles, from the ocean to downtown and beyond. While parking can be expensive, the museum and grounds are free, so public transportation is a great option. Metro Rapid Line 761 stops right outside the gates and it’s only a short walk to the tram station. From there, one of the Getty’s trams will transport you up the hillside to the front steps of the museum. But before you go in, look to the right of the steps and notice a small trickle of water which, if you follow it, becomes a rushing stream winding it’s way though lush and diverse plants and flowers and finally dropping off into a pond surrounded by a garden and containing a beautiful azalea maze. The Getty also boasts large expanses of emerald green lawn, perfect for picnics or just hanging out. The museums permanent collection is housed mostly in it’s three main buildings, The most famous pieces are in the impressionist gallery where you can see works by Van Gogh, Monet and Renoir. This gallery is where most of the crowds gather, but to see some hidden gems, make your way over to the pastel gallery where you will find works by Degas and Vivian. The museum also hosts many temporary exhibits which range from ancient pieces to modern, interactive installations where you can become part of the art itself. There are special programs for all ages including ways to make visits with children fun and creative, and The Getty offers daily tours of its collection, grounds and architecture. There are various place to eat at the Getty from carts to cafes to an upscale restaurant which requires reservations. You can also purchase gourmet picnics and lunches which you can enjoy on the grounds. Visiting The Getty offers a wonderful respite from the city and a truly unique day out in Los Angeles.
Great Art + Great Location!
Les S. Mar 22, 2013
The Getty Museum is just one of those places one must visit when visiting Los Angeles. They have tons of fine art inside that anyone can truly appreciate regardless if one is an art person or not. The outdoor part of the museum is a gorgeous garden with all types of flowers and plants that smell wonderful. The best part of the museum for me is the view it has, you can see all of Los Angeles from museum and it looks gorgeous. I could literally sit there and just look at the view and sunset without a care in the world.
Gorgeous location
Kimberly A. Mar 18, 2013
I went here one weekend when I needed to get away from school. I had never been before so it was a nice, relaxing experience. You have to take a tram up the hill to get to the top. The whole museum has a clean futuristic feeling. Unfortunately I went at a time where the garden was closed but I have heard it is beautiful. I went with a friend and we sat at the edge of the museum and watched the sun go down. You can really see all of Los Angeles from here. I am not super educated in the world of art but it was nice to walk through and look at all the paintings.
Gets better with age, like wine!
Valerie Y. Mar 5, 2013
I have been to the Getty Center twice- once as a 13 year old with family, and once as a college student on College Day. I definitely enjoyed it my second time much more. And who knows, maybe I'll enjoy it even more after another decade or two. My first time here I mainly enjoyed the flowers outside. My second time here they had free food and a Photo Booth. Many UCLA students say they come here to study, but I would be too bored here to study. As you can tell, I’m not into museums. Even if you aren’t either, I’d still say you should visit the Getty Center at least once, to see what the fuss is about.
More than a museum
Kate K. Mar 4, 2013
The Getty Center is a must-visit for both tourists and LA natives. There is a variety of different painting exhibits of various eras and styles. Additionally, there are always new traveling exhibits as well. The garden is filled with many different flowers and trees and it is a great spot for photographs. Admission is free, but you do have to pay for parking (unless you go in the late afternoon, then it is free as well). If you check the museum’s website, they also have various evening events scheduled, such as small concerts. The cafes are great for lunch, with seating inside and on the patio.
A great escape
John I. Feb 27, 2013
This is a must visit. Entrance is free (you only have to pay for parking) and the views are spectacular. The art collection is impressive, nothing too special. But let’s be frank, you go to the Getty for the spectacular views. Be sure it’s a sunny day! The architecture itself is an impressive feat and can be considered art. The same goes for the gardens. Don’t forget about the Getty Villa too! Go see the sculptures or check out a show. Visiting the Getty is a great way to escape from the city and feel that there actually still is clean air in Los Angeles.
The Quintessence of Refined Entertainment.
Sarah A. Jan 10, 2013
The sprawling facility that is the Getty is a work of art in and of itself. Just as alluring as the paintings, drawings, illuminated manuscripts and sculptures featured inside, the lush, 134,000-square-foot Central Garden is a mesmerizing and meandering display of ingenious patterns and designs carefully complemented by the interplay of streams and fountains. One could easily spend a full day at just one location--i.e. the art gallery or garden, so it is best to absorb as much as possible in your first visit, but be sure to plan for several more trips, as it would be impossible to appreciate every aspect of the Getty at one time. With all of the things to see and do, you are sure to work up an appetite. With that in mind, the Getty offers a restaurant, cafe and several coffee carts. Although not required, reservations for the restaurant are recommended. Best of all, however, reservations are not necessary for the museum proper and admission to the site and all other exhibitions is free. I give the Getty all 4 stars because it is the quintessence of refined entertainment with truly something for everyone.
Stunning Views Above the Smog
Daniel B. Dec 5, 2012
Well, more like, smack dab in the middle of it. But on a "clear" day in LA, the Getty offers some of the best views of the city. The garden and architecture are just as beautiful and thought-provoking as the art works housed inside the galleries. The permanent collections are extensive and the rotating shows cover everything from revolutionary Cuban photography to the abstract period of Gerhard Richter (god of genre, master of medium). Check out the monthly concerts that feature everyone from classical icon Christopher O'Riley (for you NPR nerds) to indie bands like Poolside. And bring some food to picnic in the garden as you take in the wide range of sculptures (the food at the Getty is decent but pricey). Just don't rush yourself and try to see everything in one day, you'll be able to digest more by taking the museum in small bites.
Gorgeous, must see
Jenica F. Dec 4, 2012
Beautiful museum. The great thing about the Getty is, not only is there beautiful art to look at, but there are also so many other things to do and look at here that you can spend a whole day here no problem. You can get there by shuttle, which is convenient. The gardens are gorgeous to wander around in on a sunny day. There are water features and great places to grab lunch. It is a good time for literally everyone, even those who don’t typically frequent museums. It is a must-go if you are in LA and have a free day. The buildings are white and stunning.
Cool place
Zoë C. Dec 3, 2012
The Getty Center is a great place to visit for out of towners as well as locals. You can make a relaxing day trip out of it by packing your own food and having a picnic on the lawn. The views are amazing starting with the buildings. The white buildings are modern architectural masterpieces that look like art. The Getty is located on a mountain that you have to take a tram to get to it. Scenic views surround you and on clear days you can see the ocean and downtown Los Angeles. A must see is the central garden with labyrinth like greenery and flowers. You will be recharged after a day at the Getty.
Great Day Trip
Emily R. Dec 3, 2012
I absolutely love getting over to the Getty! They have some of the most amazing exhibits and one of the best views of LA since its located on top of a hill. If you are going with family or maybe even a date, make sure you eat at their restaurant. My family makes it a mother's day tradition to go to the Getty and eat there for an amazing meal, view, experience, and overall day. Look online for their current exhibitions and make sure you set aside a day for the ultimate experience. Also, the Getty Villa in Malibu is another amazing museum that I highly recommend!
Rachel S. Nov 29, 2012
The Getty is one of the most amazing and diverse museums that I have ever been too. They have many different exhibits and get seasonal ones as well. I am always in awe when I go to the Getty. I love to see the vintage clothes they have displayed there. The tram up to the museum is also a cool feature. The view itself is also great because it looks out over Los Angeles. It takes more that one day to see everything the museum has to offer and it is definitely worth it to make a stop here if your visiting or even if you are from los angeles.
An Unforgettable LA Highlight
Armen M. Nov 28, 2012
The Getty Museum is probably the only museum I know of where you can spend the entire day outside on-location without seeing any of the artwork inside. Living in LA, it's easy to become jaded and lost. Lost in a sea of traffic, smog, work, garbage; you tend to forget what makes this city so special, why people flock here from around the world. Well, the Getty Museum is there to remind us all that Los Angeles is simply stunning. The museum is nestled amongst some hills off of the 405 freeway, just north of UCLA. It's so far from the hustle and bustle of city traffic down below that you need a tram to get to the darn place. Parking can be steep (15 bucks), but trust me: it's worth it once you see the gorgeous view. On a clear day, you might even be able to spot the ocean. On top of this, the onsite outdoor gardens provide a colorful foreground for this awe-inspiring backdrop. Speaking of outdoor gardens, make sure you see the Central Garden. To be fair, it's pretty difficult to miss due to its size. This labyrinth of bougainvillea, azalea, and deer grass will have your head spinning. So once you're done soaking all of that in for a few hours, now it's time to admire the architecture. The museum, designed by Richard Meier, is an architectural masterclass. It is geometrically stylized with a modern and symmetrical feel. The multi-tiered and multi-faceted museum complex was built using travertine stone shipped directly from Italy. This notable beige-tinted rock has a simultaneously natural and urban feel to it, sweetly reflecting the radiant Southern California sunshine rays. Forget paying for overpriced museum food. Bring a packed lunch with you and set up a little picnic for yourself on their lush green lawns. You'll save yourself some money and enjoy the jaw-dropping scenery all in one shot. Now for the artwork, which like everything else I've described, is on another level. From Van Gogh's classic Irises to ancient Greco-Roman sculptures... There's something for everyone to see here. What's that you say? You don't know a thing about art? No worries, museum tours are free and the curators have all kinds of valuable insight for people of all ages. So if you have friends/relatives from out of town, make sure you take them to see the Getty. And if you live in LA and you've never been to the Getty, what are you doing with your life? Get over there ASAP! Seriously. You won't regret it.
Must Go
Becca M. Nov 28, 2012
A trip to the Getty is my favorite way to spend a beautiful afternoon in Brentwood. The spectacular views of LA make it hands down my favorite museum in the city. The 10-minute tram ride up the hill to the Getty is a highlight of the experience--so much fun and provides panoramic views of the city. The Getty has a great variety of classic and modern art exhibits. My personal favorite exhibit was the Herb Ritts photography exhibit Summer 2012. The garden is always a draw with geometric-shaped topiaries and colorful flowers. The whole experience is very zen. I suggest the Getty whenever I have family or friends in town and go there with locals fairly regularly. There's always something new to check out.
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