Monday, May 25, 2009

Getty Villa. Memorial Day weekend 2009

If you know me, you'd know that my favorite hang out spot here in Los Angeles is the Getty Center. The Getty Center is a modern structure designed by American architect Richard Meier, who also designed the Museum of Contemporary Art in Barcelona with his distinctive white squares facade. I visit the Getty Center whenever I can just to hang out, relax, and immerse myself in their wonderful art collections, architecture, and the beautiful garden. It's refreshing.

However, I've not had a chance to visit the Getty Villa in Malibu and I've been wanting to go for years.

Since I'm not going out of town this Memorial Day weekend, I decided to check out the Pompeii and Roman Villa exhibition at the LACMA. I found out that my admission ticket to this exhibition also gives me access to the Getty Villa without reserving a ticket in advance. So I decided to seize this opportunity.

The Getty Villa is nestled in the hills by the Pacific Ocean.

There's a tranquil water lily pound. So soothing. :)

Unlike the modern design of the Getty Center, the Getty Villa is modeled after the Villa dei Papiri, a Roman country house in Herculaneum buried by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 A.D. I joined an architecture and garden tour to learn more about this place.

We stopped at the Inner Peristyle with a decorative garden and pound. The docent explained the symmetrical style in Roman decoration, and how they are the first "control freaks" in their style. It was pretty funny. I also learned from LACMA that the Roman art was heavily influenced by the Greek, and it's evident throughout the building.

The docent mentioned the Pompeii exhibition at the LACMA, and I was the only person in the group that had seen it. The LACMA exhibition had motifs and artifacts from the actual villa, so it was nice to connect the dots seeing where things were placed. I saw the original statue of this woman at LACMA the day before.

We then went to the Outer Peristyle. There's this breathtaking garden and pool outside. I felt like I was in Naples!

This place is so beautiful!

The statue at one end of the pool.

It's so relaxing here.

The statue at the other end of the pool.

Looking at the villa from the other end of the pool.

A statue of Mercury. Notice the wings on his feet...he's supposed to be fast!

We then went to the herb garden. These Lamb's Ear leaves are soooo soft. The Romans used these as band-aids.

There's also a little pound at the Herb Garden.

I saw the original of this sculpture at the LACMA also.

After the tour, I went to check out some of the exhibitions. There's a replica of the Temple of Herakles (Hercules) inside the villa with a statue of Herakles.

The colorful East Garden.

Someone put a bug in his mouth. :D

This beautiful foyer leads to the Outer Peristyle, the docent said at the actual villa, this is used as a dining room.

Beautiful marble floor.

The walk way surrounding the Outer Peristyle and the pool.

Vibrant flowers at the garden.

A beautiful Iris by the pool.

Chilling by the pool. Ahhh...I can spend the whole day here! :)

Looking at the pool. So relaxing.

It's just another beautiful sunny LA day. ;)

This is the Atrium of the villa. There's a little pool inside. According to the docent, water pumped from the Roman aqueduct actually passes this pool inside the villa.

Looking at the water lily pound from up above.

The entrance to the villa/Getty Museum.

One last shot before I leave.

You can't beat this view!

I'm declaring the Getty Villa my new favorite LA spot! Now I know this hidden treasure, I'll be coming back for more! :)

1 comment:

  1. hi joy. i hope you continue sharing stories of the places you visit, even they are local. :)