EASCAPE TO THE GETTY

With the sad aftermath of the Woolsey fire still everywhere in scent and scene in my Malibu, an escape was needed, as I comment on public radio, 99.1 KBUU, and select websites.

So what could be better and more convenient than an excursion to the nearby Getty Museum on its accessible hilltop in Brentwood, and there to be transported back to an awakening, artful Europe of old, in an engaging and enlightening exhibit, entitled “The Renaissance Nude.”

Some 100 works of art offer views of the nude, vibrant and fetching , that the avant-garde artist of the day thrust on a then pious society dominated by the church, proclaiming its celibacy while censuring what they considered sin.

Viewing the once daring art in their controversial context was affecting, and reminded me of the time not so long ago when photographs of uncompromising sexuality challenged the art establishment, which then threatened to cut off funding and close down museums. We happily have moved on.

Ah, but during the Renaissance many of the artists, such greats as Da Vinci, Durer, Michelangelo and Raphael, were church favorites, and indeed in the employee of the Vatican, as well as the nobility and venerated. 

So in short time they prevailed and the nude became ubiquitous, beginning actually mostly with the male nude. So we have a large engraving from the 1470s, entitled Battle of the Nudes, in which the male is depicted in various postures.

Its fame emboldened the artists of the day, and soon the female was unclothed, in particular Venus, the Roman goddess of love, as exhibited in the differing works of Titian and Gossart.  I do love her as shown in various poses, as I am enchanted by the seductress Bathsheba exposed in manuscripts and in paintings. 

However, not exhibited is perhaps the world’s most famous sculpted nude, Michelangelo’s David, which I am sure will never be removed from its perch in Florence, or should be.

Though Michelangelo’s anatomical studies are displayed in all their meticulous detail, as is a reproduction of his awesome 45 foot Last Judgement, the original, of course, in the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican.   

On display also are a wealth of other masterpieces from the great collection of Europe. These include Titian’s magnificent “Venus Rising From the Sea,” and center stage in a room, Leonardo da Vinci’s studies , in pen and ink, and black chalk.

 They are mesmerizing, as is much of the exhibition, which runs until January 27th of next year. This is great, for personally it gives me nearly two months to plan other visits. This is an exhibition to be seen several times.

ith the sad aftermath of theWoolsey fire still everywhere in scent and scene in my Malibu, an escape wasneeded, as I comment on public radio, 99.1 KBUU, and select websites.

So what could be better and more convenient than an excursion to the nearby Getty Museum on its accessible hilltop in Brentwood, and there to be transported back to an awakening, artful Europe of old, in an engaging and enlightening exhibit, entitled “The Renaissance Nude.”

Some 100 works of art offer views of the nude, vibrant and fetching , that the avant-garde artist of the day thrust on a then pious society dominated by the church, proclaiming its celibacy while censuring what they considered sin.

Viewing the once daring art in their controversial context was affecting, and reminded me of the time not so long ago when photographs of uncompromising sexuality challenged the art establishment, which then threatened to cut off funding and close down museums. We happily have moved on.

Ah, but during the Renaissance many of the artists, such greats as Da Vinci, Durer, Michelangelo and Raphael, were church favorites, and indeed in the employee of the Vatican, as well as the nobility and venerated. 

So in short time they prevailed and the nude became ubiquitous, beginning actually mostly with the male nude. So we have a large engraving from the 1470s, entitled Battle of the Nudes, in which the male is depicted in various postures.

Its fame emboldened the artists of the day, and soon the female was unclothed, in particular Venus, the Roman goddess of love, as exhibited in the differing works of Titian and Gossart.  I do love her as shown in various poses, as I am enchanted by the seductress Bathsheba exposed in manuscripts and in paintings. 

However, not exhibited is perhaps the world’s most famous sculpted nude, Michelangelo’s David, which I am sure will never be removed from its perch in Florence, or should be.

Though Michelangelo’s anatomical studies are displayed in all their meticulous detail, as is a reproduction of his awesome 45 foot Last Judgement, the original, of course, in the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican.   

On display also are a wealth of other masterpieces from the great collection of Europe. These include Titian’s magnificent “Venus Rising From the Sea,” and center stage in a room, Leonardo da Vinci’s studies , in pen and ink, and black chalk.

 They are mesmerizing, as is much of the exhibition, which runs until January 27th of next year. This is great, for personally it gives me nearly two months to plan other visits. This is an exhibition to be seen several times.

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hallkaplan

Parallel careers as an urban planner and a journalist, principally at present airing commentaries on pubic radio 99.1 KBU.FM The many arrows in my quiver have included Emmy award winning reporter/ producer for local Fox Television News, design critic for the Los Angeles Times, urban affairs reporter for The New York Times, an editor of The New York Post, contributor to various popular and professional publications, news services and broadcast outlets, including Reuters, NET, NBC, CBS, NPR and the BBC. Founding editor of the East Harlem (NY) Independent. A diversity of professional positions and consultancies in the private and public sectors, (Metro, Disney Imagineering, Howard Hughes, M. Milken, NYC Educational Construction Fund, US Comptroller of the Currency etc,) assorted academic appointments (UCLA, USC, CCNY, Art Center etc.), and always open to new challenge. And let us not forget fashioning sand castles and acting on 90210, crafting TV docs, design reviews, master plans. Books: "The Dream Deferred: People, Politics and Planning in Suburbia," "L.A. Lost and Found," an architectural history of Los Angeles, "L.A. Follies," a collection of essays, and co-author of "The New York City Handbook." Writings have appeared in academic texts, commentaries on the web, scripts for TV, and wherever, latest the Architects Newspaper, The Planning Report and Planetizen.

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