Getty Villa

This week I decided to take a short trip to Los Angeles, mostly to say goodbye to the campus and the people, before I leave to live in France for the year. I’ve already taken several walks around school (one of which was supposed to be long and meandering but ended up with me just sitting in the botanical gardens) and seen some great people. I have lots to do on my list and lots that I have already checked off.

Yesterday, I went to the Getty Villa with my friend Leah. I’ve been dying to go because I love the original Getty, so I felt like I would like the Villa just as much. I did.

The Getty Villa is located in Malibu and because it’s tinier than the Getty you are required to have reservations to get in (tickets are free though, very nice). Driving through the gates and up the stoney driveway to the museum is probably one of the nicest drives in LA despite being like only a tenth of a mile. Martha Stewart herself must have collaborated with Zeus to do the landscaping; it was immaculate. The museum and other buildings were also beautifully gardened just like the Getty (there was rosemary growing from the parking structure(!)).

The Getty Villa, besides having tons of awesome flora, was designed to look like the buildings from the classical cultures (Greek, Roman, Etruscan) they are exhibiting. There’s bunches of columns, murals on the walls, statues of gods and goddesses, as well an amphitheater where actual performances take place.

Walking through the museum, you get to see blown glass, marble statues, ancient artwork, and even a mummy. There are various stations that you can interact with, one with movies that show how glass mosaics are made, one for kids that let them do etching onto paper “pottery”, and even a statue of Venus outside where viewers are encouraged to touch her skin and clothes to feel textural differences in the two. Lots of cool stuff.

Of course, any visit to the Getty (and now Getty Villa) would not be complete without an iced coffee drink as the cafe carts at these two museums serve seriously the best coffee. Besides the drinks, we also stopped in to the gift shop and saw beautiful watches, ties, and even a few books on the Olympics that fit the villa’s theme.

Every square inch of the Getty Villa is gorgeous and the views are spectacular (you can see the ocean from one of the balconies). The art inside is great and the gardens are to die for. I had a great day there, which I’m sure if true for everyone who visits. I’m so glad I got to go and can’t wait to do more fun stuff while I’m here.

I’ll be a writing a post later on my other LA adventures, but for now I’m going to go on more walks around campus!

Charley Guptill