Good thing the air is always clear at the Getty Center. Its hilltop perch happily looks down onto LA's carbon blanket. (For my previous posts on the Getty, see: Shadows and the Getty and Shadows, Lines and Blue Sky.)
I've been to the Getty several times and love it for the new things I discover with each visit. This time, there was something desert oasis about it. The colors of the stone and sky reminded me of some city in a middle eastern kingdom I'd never been to.
Or ruins in the eastern mediterranean, like the ancient Roman Library at Ephesus (which I have been to).
But, these were no ruins. This is modern architecture at its most stunning, molded into the Santa Monica mountains in LA: A house for art. A frame for views.
It actually begins with a sense of anticipation as you ride the Getty train up the steep hill to the Center. Or maybe go even further back, to the winding drive from West Hollywood, up tree-lined Sunset Boulevard, which takes you through the tony neighborhoods of Beverly Hills and Westwood. It's a gorgeous drive.
Once at the Getty, I always find fresh perspectives on Richard Meier's (the architect's) lines and geometries.
You may sense the scorching sun in these parts. They actually lend out shade umbrellas at various points around the Center. However, I much preferred these Japanese-looking flower parasols cooling the garden.
And this welcome stream which terminates into a waterfall.
Anyway, I was busy looking at the ever-changing exhibits -- from the French decorative arts, to Herb Ritts' sophisticated photography -- so I wasn't out in the garden too much. Besides, my trusty Panama hat kept me cool.
Right here, I turned around from the view to discover a reflective window. Ha, finally a fuzzy self-portrait! Hmm, there must be some philosophical significance to this. Like "finding myself" ...?
We were traipsing around LA for several days and the Getty was just one of the stops. For those who think LA is just about Hollywood, time for another think. There are really some wonderful cultural institutions -- beyond pop culture -- in the city of Angels.
How is everyone's summer going so far? I hear England isn't having much of one lately. So, sending a bit of California sunshine your way.