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Departures: 11 Artists at the Getty

  • Lisa Lyons

    Departures chronicles the exhibition of specially commissioned works produced by eleven internationally acclaimed artists in response to objects in the Getty Museum. Using the Getty collections as a point of departure, the artists created new works spanning a broad stylistic spectrum in media including painting, sculpture, photography, film, and video. For instance, conceptual artist John Baldessari's work features Albrecht Dürer's diminutive drawing Stag Beetle (1505) enlarged to mural scale and held in place by a gigantic specimen pin, while ceramist Adrian Saxe created a porcelain and stoneware centerpiece designed especially for an eighteenth-century French table in the Getty collection.

    Participating artists are Baldessari, Uta Barth, Sharon Ellis, Judy Fiskin, Martin Kersels, John M. Miller, Ruben Ortiz-Torres, Lari Pittman, Stephen Prina, Alison Saar, and Saxe. Published to coincide with an exhibition at the Getty Museum in 2000, the book provides a rare glimpse at these artists, including their past work, the objects they created for this unusual exhibition, and their studios. Essays on each artist's commissioned work along with Grant Mudford's photographs of the artists and the artwork provide a thought-provoking exploration of the potent and surprising ways in which art of the past can inform contemporary art.

    Lisa Lyons is an independent curator and consultant and the guest curator of the Departures exhibit. 

    "A pleasure to read ... packed with information and insights. It focuses on the decisions each artist made as they chose their points of departure."
    —Los Angeles Times

    "A fascinating look at the relationship between contemporary art and art of the past with insightful windows into the artistic process."
    —Bloomsbury Review

    64 pages
    9 x 9 inches
    44 duotone illustrations
    ISBN 978-0-89236-582-1

    Getty Publications
    Imprint: J. Paul Getty Museum