The Getty Center: The Most Impressive Architectural Achievement in the US

It is no surprise that many people put a trip to the Getty Center at the top of their list of things to do in LA. This impressive piece of architecture is home to one of the world’s most impressive art collections that comes together in a gorgeous natural setting. Here is what you need to know about a trip to the Getty Center.

About the Getty Center: This stunning piece of modern architecture opened in December of 1997 featuring the design of Pritzker Prize-winning architect Richard Meier. The center is located on a hilltop overlooking Brentwood in the Santa Monica Mountains. The sprawling 24-acre campus encompasses the Getty Conservation Institute, the Getty Research Institute, the Getty Foundation, and the J. Paul Getty Trust.

What to See at the Getty Center: The Getty Center is best known for its impressive permanent art collection. The vast collection features an array of pre-20th-century European paintings, sculptures, and more. The center also boasts a variety of 19th and 20th-century Asian, European, and American photographs as well as a host of contemporary sculptures.

It is impossible to list all of the pieces of art that you can expect to see with a trip to the Getty Center but a few highlights include the famous Vincent van Gogh masterpiece “Irises” and Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn self-portrait “Rembrandt Laughing.” The 28 outdoor sculptures will expand your art viewing pleasure to a different art format.

Be sure to also allow time to check out the rotating pictures that are on display at the Center for Photographs. This 7,000-square-foot venue in the West Pavilion is distinguished for offering one of the most comprehensive collections of photographs on the planet. These are just a few of the hidden gems you will find at this venue.

Beyond the Art: In addition to the fine art exhibitions, the Getty Center also puts you up close and personal with one of the finest architectural achievements of the modern century. The lush gardens are a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city. Visitors will delight in taking in the sweeping city views from this hilltop location.

Bring a picnic or purchase a box lunch on site and enjoy eating on the lawn next to the Central Garden or on the terrace adjacent to the Garden Terrace Cafe. The Central Garden features 134,000 square feet of tree-lined walking paths, beautiful water features, and over 500 varieties of plants to discover. Do not miss the succulent cactus garden at the South Promontory, taking advantage of the natural topography and climate of Southern California.

There is a reason why over 20 million people have made it a priority to visit the Getty Center. There is so much beauty and serenity waiting to be discovered at this Los Angeles area gem.