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Getty Museum and Armenian Church Reach Agreement Over Medieval Manuscript

On 21 September 2015, the J. Paul Getty Museum, California and the Western Prelacy of the Armenian Apostolic Church of America announced that they have solved their dispute over the ownership of eight illustrated pieces of medieval parchment. This is a significant occasion for the Armenian people marking the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. The solution resulted with the church officials donating the pages to the Getty, “[…] where they will be made available in perpetuity to the Armenian community, to scholars and to an appreciative public,” Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian said in a statement. The agreement acknowledges the Church’s historical ownership of the pages however in the hands of the museum, it will ensure their preservation and widespread exhibition. The pages, called Canon Tables, painted by T’oros Roslin in the 13th century were separated a century ago from the rest of the religious manuscript, the Zeyt’un Gospels which has been preserved at the Matenadaran Institute of Ancient Manuscripts in Armenia. They are the earliest signed work of Roslin who was the most accomplished illuminator and scribe in Armenia in the 1200s. The pages have been in the Getty’s collection since 1994 and were bought for nearly $1 million. The Gospels were handled by refugee families and “[…] we do hope one day they will be reunited.” said Lee Crawford Boyd, a lawyer who has represented the...

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Getty Museum acquires important Georges Seurat drawing

Los Angeles, 11 February 2014, Art Media Agency (AMA). The J. Paul Getty Museum has acquired a major drawing by Post-Impressionist artist Georges Seurat: Indian Beggar (1878-1979). Indian Beggar is significant as it reveals Seurat’s stylistic evolution, having been created when the artist was only 20 years old. It represents his first fundamental research into the marriage of light and shadow. Seurat received a very typical artistic education, his early pieces being faithful and solemn reproductions of Greek statues. This work demonstrates the initial signs of Seurat’s prolific talent, and is centered around areas of light and shadow. According to Timothy Potts, the Getty Museum’s director, Indian Beggar will greatly complement the museum’s collection of the artist’s œuvre, adding an extra level of understanding to works such as Madame Seurat, the Artist’s Mother (1882-83), Poplars (1883-84), and Woman Strolling (1884). The plans for the drawings display are to be announced...

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Classical mythology at the Getty

Los Angeles, 6 November 2013, Art Media Agency (AMA). The Getty Museum is to present “Gods and Heroes: European Drawings of Classical Mythology”, to take place from 19 November 2013 until 9 February 2014. The museum is to present a number of drawings depicting classical heroes, and Greco-Roman Gods; with depictions from different production periods showing differing approaches to the latter’s representation. The Getty Museum is to present nearly forty drawings dating from the Renaissance to the 19th century with the myths around which they centre – whether Greek or Roman in origin – having played a significant role in artistic production across several centuries of Western art...

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Two masterpieces of medieval English art at the Getty Museum

Los Angeles, 23 September 2013, Art Media Agency (AMA). This autumn, the J. Paul Getty museum is presenting two works of medieval art: six exquisite stained-glass windows representing the Ancestors of Christ from Canterbury Cathedral, and the St. Albans psalter, a major manuscript in the art of the English novel. The exhibition: “Canterbury and St. Albans: Treasures from Church and Cloister” is taking place from 20 September 2013 until 2 February 2014. It is bringing together huge stained-glass windows with the art of book illumination, to show how specific texts, books and prayers allowed the medieval public to grasp the meaning of the images in the windows. “It is a unique privilege to be able to exhibit these two masterpieces of medieval English art in Los Angeles, said Timothy Potts, director of the J. Paul Getty Museum. “Both dating to the twelfth century, the magnificent monumental, stained-glass Ancestors of Christ from Canterbury Cathedral and the intimate images of biblical subjects in the St. Albans Psalter complement each other perfectly at the highest level of technical and artistic achievement. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for anyone interested in medieval art—and especially for those who do not yet know that they...

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The Cyrus Cylinder travels to the US

London, 5 December 2012, Art Media Agency (AMA). The Cyrus Cylinder – ancient baked clay cylinder dating from 539 to 530 BC and discovered in Mesopotamia – considered the first declaration of human rights, and today conserved in the British Museum of London, is going to tour five cities in the United States along with other sixteen objects in an exhibition titled “The Cyrus Cylinder in Ancient Persia”. This was announced lately by the British Museum, which allows the tour in the United States with the support of the Iran Heritage Foundation. The Cylinder was found in 1879 during a British Museum excavation and has been in display at the museum ever since. The tour will start at the Smithsonian’s Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in Washington DC in March 2013 before travelling to the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Asian Art Museum, San Francisco and will conclude at the J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Villa Los Angeles in October The exhibition is curated by John Curtis, Keeper of Special Middle East Projects at the British Museum and curatorial colleagues at each of the venues. The object is a treasure and a world heritage: it is one of the most famous objects to have survived from the ancient world. It is very well conserved although it is broken into several fragments. The inscription on the Cylinder is in Babylonian cuneiform (the earliest form of writing) on the orders of Persian King Cyrus the Great (559-530 BC) after he conquered Babylon in 539BC. The reason why it is considered today as the first bill of human rights is because it happens to approach the notions of freedom, encouraging worship and allowing deported people to return to their homelands. Today it...

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