The Getty Center Will Celebrate Its 20th Anniversary with Multiple Free Events Starting This February

The J. Paul Getty Museum will host a handful of free events to celebrate the Getty Center’s 20th anniversary, starting with a lecture by Getty Museum Director Timothy Potts on February 13, and continuing with special events through May 20.

In the past two decades the Getty Center has become one of L.A.’s most beloved cultural institutions. The campus was built to house J. Paul Getty’s private art collection, as the existing Getty Museum had reached capacity. The project broke ground in 1989, and cost a total of $1.3 billion. It was opened to the public on December 16, 1997. Architect Richard Meier’s modernist design, Robert Irwin’s immaculate garden, and the Center’s position in the hills of the Santa Monica Mountains make The Getty Center one of the most visually stunning settings in all of Los Angeles County. Then, of course, there’s the museum’s massive collection of paintings, photographs, manuscripts, decorative arts, and sculpture.


Upcoming anniversary-related events include Latin jazz performances, a family-friendly festival, and an architectural panel discussion. Admission to the Getty Center is always free (parking will cost you $15, or $10 after 3 p.m.), so the upcoming events (listed below) are just an added bonus to an already good deal.

Getty Center Garden
The Getty Center. Credit: Nick Webb via flickr cc

Getty Center 20th Anniversary Events

NOTE: Some of these events, even though free, are ticketed and have limited capacity. Please be sure to check the Getty’s events calendar for more information.

Priceless Objects?: Tales from the Art Market
Tuesday, February 13 at 7 p.m.
Getty Museum Director Timothy Potts and senior curators will offer a lecture on the recent additions to the museum’s collection.

Saturday, February 17, 7 p.m.
Sunday, February 18, 4 p.m.
Cuba L.A. will celebrate Afro-Cuban percussionist Francisco Aguabella (1925-2010) with two performances featuring Latin jazz standards and Aguabella’s original compositions.

Family Festival
Saturday, March 10, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The Getty Center will host a family-friendly birthday party featuring DJs, games, crafts, and a photo booth.

Sounds of L.A.: Hermanos Herrera
Saturday March 17, 7 p.m.
Sunday, March 18, 4 p.m.
Six-piece Mexican musical act Hermanos Herrera will perform using traditional instruments from Veracruz. As the name might imply all members of this band are siblings.

Learning from the Getty Center
Sunday, May 20 at 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Architects and planners will convene to discuss what lessons and opportunities new Los Angeles museums have received from the Getty Center’s opening.


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