PST—What Does It Really Mean For The Arts?

As our gaze now opens up and we look beyond the Ferus Gallery and the Ferus Gang of artists promoted by Walter Hopps and Irving Blum, we begin to recognize that there genuinely was something significant going on in greater Los Angeles during the Post-WWII years as far as the visual arts were concerned.  Under the leadership of the Getty Foundation, visionaries in Southern California arts administration not only recognized the tremendous contributions made by both Hopps and Blum, but their collective effort was in serious danger of being contextually lost with the passage of time and the death of its leaders and artists.  This precarious situation caused the Getty leadership to mobilize and seek to recognize, celebrate and preserve the greater Ferus/LA legacy.  Deborah Marrow, Interim President and CEO of the J. Paul Getty Trust, stated the following in the Pacific Standard Time Exhibition Catalog:

“Identifying and preserving the archives that document the milestones of contemporary art in the postwar period of our region…We wound up with the most comprehensive and public collaboration by cultural organizations in Southern California, or perhaps anywhere, and one that is now itself a creative landmark.”

What are your thoughts on an organization like the Getty Trust stepping in and using it’s foundation financial strength to initiate a series of document gathering endeavors and representative exhibitions of the Post-WWII era visual art production in Los Angeles?

Deborah Marrow of the Getty Trust

Author: roberttracyphd

Academic professor at the University of Nevada Las Vegas. I teach theory courses in Art and Architecture History. In addition, I also curate exhibitions on campus as well as in other venues nationally and internationally.

17 thoughts on “PST—What Does It Really Mean For The Arts?”

  1. My thoughts on how the Getty Trust organization has helped us the people preserve the history of art and the artist. They also help today’s people to know that the exhibition is there. And have great documentation to support the visual arts.

    Like

  2. I think that the Getty’s devotion to such an endeavor is very important to the preservation of the culture of Los Angeles. It would have been disappointing to know that everything the artist of SoCal did to achieve a significant impact on the artist scene would have been for practically nothing because the legacy was gone. Now that this time period of art has been preserved people are able to see who these artist were and what they stood for. It is a really remarkable thing that the Getty did to maintain the legacy of SoCal art.

    Like

  3. I think that the Getty’s decision to step in to preserve Post-WWII era Los Angeles art was necessary to keep that point of art history alive. The Post-WWII era was majorly overlooked and thanks to the Getty Trust’s deep pockets, the pieces from that era are available for anyone to see. It would be a shame if these pieces were lost in time because a piece of Southern California culture would have been completely erased. The contemporary art that was inspired by Post-WWII art would be without context if the Getty Trust did not step in to save it.

    Like

  4. It’s important to have organizations with financial backing to commence projects such as Pacific Standard Time. Often times what is necessary is for one group with a clear goal and money to step in. However, we as a community must also be wary of the ways in which groups such as the Getty document, curate, and disseminate our culture. We have to keep them accountable and to make sure that there are no biases, and that all these sorts of efforts are genuine, well-researched, and done properly.

    Like

  5. Projects such as Pacific Standard Time reveal a part of art history that has been usually overlooked. Financial support from the Getty is vital in exposing art produced in Los Angeles from 1945-1980. The Getty’s financial strength allows for the legacy of art in Los Angeles to remain a part of history instead of being overlooked or untold. These documents and exhibitions have helped and continue to help scholars and artists understand the ever-changing art scene throughout time.

    Like

  6. I think that it was the right decision for the Getty Trust to step in and preserve the Post-WWII Era art because if they hadn’t, not only would the art be possibly forgotten, but the art scene would have never gotten the chance to progress. The artists of this era made huge contributions to the art scene and really made it what it is. If all of their efforts were forgotten, no one would know what it took for the art scene to be what it is today.

    Like

  7. I considered it key to the successful archive and exhibition of LA art and fulfillment to its philanthropic mission that the Trust kept the Foundation’s focus after the passing of James Wood. Additionally, Marrow, formerly with the Foundation and directly aware of the importance in completing this task, made mobilizing the Trust funds that much more significant and expeditious. This collaboration or “creative landmark” serves as a model for the dissemination of art and the significance of art itself.

    Like

  8. The Getty Trust did something wonderful when it decided to step in and save the historical records of the Post-WWII era visual art production in Los Angeles. A new wave of art history was unfolding, and it should not go unrecognized of its origin and legacy. People were showing how they were feeling or what was going on in their minds through abstract expressionism. Interesting pieces were being constructed and the Getty knew that these works of art were something not to be overlooked.

    Like

  9. The Getty made the correct decision when it came to preserving Post-WWII Era Art. Whether it is something that is appreciated or something disregarded it is their priority as art historians to preserve all forms of history. Imagine if new generations was not taught about the holocaust because it was a shameful page of our past. Every significant individual that contributed to any movement should be recognized and commemorated. At the end of the day these artists led their movements and should be immortalized for it.

    Like

  10. It’s inspiring to see an established art foundation support new and upcoming artists and styles because that is when the money and exposure is most needed the most to help them get of the ground and not be forgotten.

    Like

  11. I believe it is extremely important to recognize the arts, so it is lucky that the Getty Trust has used its financial strength to support the history of Los Angeles art. It would be such a shame to lose and forget what the post WWII artists went through and created. Art was being done differently and there were new attitudes toward it – it was truly a revolutionary time in art history. I cannot imagine not having that history documented. Deborah Marrow was correct in stating that Los Angeles is now a creative landmark. Without the Getty, the rich history of that important landmark would possibly have been lost.

    Like

  12. It’s really important that the arts are documented, because without proper documentation how else would we know that it existed? I mean sure it existed at one point in time, but without documentation it’s just a momentary spectacle. If art wasn’t documented we wouldn’t have exhibits/museums showing pieces of art that are thousands of years old. I’m glad that Getty got with the program and started documenting the LA Art Scene.

    Like

  13. I think the Getty Trust is amazing for stepping in and using it’s foundation’s financial strength to initiate a series of document gathering endeavors and representative exhibitions of the Post-WWII era visual art production in Los Angeles. They are a foundation that has set out to preserve the art history of L.A. and the world. It’s important to remember our past and being able to actually go see the works because they have been protected and put on display in galleries gives upcoming artists something to view and admire in person instead of just a picture in a book or on a screen. Being able to experience these historical artworks in their true forms as they were meant to be experienced holds immense value in more ways than one and that is only possible because of the grand endeavors that the Getty Trust has set out to achieve.

    Like

  14. Without money and the right group of people, nothing will have a solid foundation. This is something best seen with the Getty Foundation and what they have done for the art gathered post-WWII. For them to go out of their way to archive such art really is important as it helps preserve such art for future generation to view and learn from it. Getty in a way created a “book” of sorts which takes a look at post-WWII art and how it had affected the artist’s way of thinking. The exhibitions serve as reminders and a savepoint the way of thinking of the artists of the era. It is up to us to learn from them and grow.

    Like

  15. I think that the contributions by the Getty Trust were a great achievement for them and something that was definitely needed in Los Angeles. I think that organizations that have a pull in their community should step up and help when they know there are things in their community that are wrong. Sometimes it does take money for major changes to take place and communities need organizations like the Getty Trust to use their financial contributions for good. It is these contributions that help the future of Art and Community grow together and for people in the community to know that their history will be persevered in a proper manor.

    Like

  16. I think it’s huge what they did. For them to collect all they did for this movement really helped preserve what happened in Los Angeles. Without them tracking every detail down and trying to collect everything, their story may not have been told, and may have been forgotten. Granted, it still might given enough time but they have helped ensure that it will live on for quite some time to come. So much can be learned from looking back through history. Without the archives, then we as a society and race would never find a way to progress past where we are.

    Like

  17. Even if Post-WWII art is not one’s “cup of tea” it is still a very important era in art history that was mostly overlooked and almost ignored by some. The Getty felt it was important to gather and to preserve the art of the period. I agree with Car Payaas by gathering and preserving the post WWII art the Getty Trust helped keep artists legacies alive for generations to come. Lansang made a great point on his post too, the Post WWII art would be without context if the Getty Trust did not step in to save it and I agree 100%.

    Like

Leave a Reply to Elizabeth Molina Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s