After a 275 million dollar facelift and 8 years of hard work, the J. Paul Getty Museum will be reopening and the majestic view of the Malibu coastline will be enjoyed by tourists from around the world. The museum closed when the new Getty Center opened in 1997 down the road. Now some of the world famous collection will be able to be seen in it’s original location.
Although it still houses an extensive Roman, Greek and Etruscan antiquities collection, the Getty received a top-to-bottom makeover. Award-winning architect Jorge Silvetti said it was designed to shake the senses of visitors, as they round a corner and first see the complex with its main building, plaza and new 450-seat outdoor amphitheater.
“I would hope there is a sense of wonder that really surprises in a very, very happy and positive way,” Silvetti said as he sat in the plaza’s courtyard on a recent sun-dappled day. “Our vision of the project was very deliberate — to create surprises.”
The centerpiece of the museum complex is still its main building, where 1,200 items dating as far back as 6500 B.C. are on display. Among them is the renowned Lansdowne Herakles, the larger-than-life statue of the Greek god that is believed to date to about 125 A.D.
The building itself was constructed in 1974 to resemble the Villa dei Papiri, a first century Roman country home that is believed to have been the residence of Julius Caesar’s father-in-law. Silvetti and his partner, Rodolfo Machado, have redone it, installing nearly 60 windows and a skylight to allow natural light and air to circulate through the building. As a result, sensitive exhibits are now sheltered in darkened galleries. via CNN