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Architecture Contest: The Getty Center

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#1 unbornchikken


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Posted 06 April 2012 - 05:14 AM

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Aerial View

Architect Series: The Getty Center


The Getty Center, in Brentwood, Los Angeles, California, is a campus for the J. Paul Getty Trust founded by oilman J. Paul Getty. The $1.3 billion center, which opened on December 16, 1997, is also well known for its architecture, gardens, and views overlooking Los Angeles.

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Front and Side

The Architect

Richard Meier was chosen as the architect for the Getty Center in 1984 and began construction on it in 1989. He is most well known for his work on the Getty Center, which catapulted his popularity into the mainstream. His works are guided by rationalism and he is known for his prominent use of the color white.

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Garden Terrace Cafe and steps up to Courtyard

The Build

The Getty Center has long been a favorite destination for myself and my family whenever we take the hour-or-so drive up to Los Angeles. I've always admired the architecture there as much as I've enjoyed looking at the art that the center houses, so picking this for my contest entry was easy...

Or so I thought. Recreating the Getty Center on a small scale was both challenging and time-consuming. Those of you who know of or have been to the Getty Center will realize that the central garden, designed by artist Robert Irwin, is conspicuously absent from the build. I regret to say I ran out of time to complete as much of the grounds as possible. Given a limited amount of time to build, I had to omit the garden, the tram station and administrative buildings, the restaurant, the cactus garden, and the GRI (Getty Research Institute). Even so, I hope that what I've done captures the wonderful work of Richard Meier.

I used white for the aluminium cladding and tan to represent the limestone, sticking always as close as I can to the shape and scale of each building.

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Courtyard looking towards the Entrance Hall

Reference Images

It would be impossible to capture even the portion of the Getty Center that I've done in a single image, but for those of you who are unfamiliar with it, hopefully this will give you some idea. If you're interested, please do visit my blog where I will be posting my thoughts on the build (sometime in the next few days) and my Flickr stream which has (many!) more images of the build as well as links to reference images I used.

Hope you've enjoyed reading, and good luck to all the contestants in this fine contest!

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(Top to Down, Left to Right) The Museum Entrance Hall, Aerial View, the Courtyard as viewed from the Entrance Hall, the Garden Terrace Cafe, and the Courtyard looking towards the Entrance Hall.

Edited by Rufus, 08 April 2012 - 08:14 PM.

#2 Yatkuu


  • Valiant effort

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 09:46 AM

Gosh, another masterpiece. Brilliant, incredibly detailed build. What a contest!  *oh2* *oh2*

#3 moctown


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Posted 07 April 2012 - 09:05 PM

Didn't know that building before, but I like your rendition very much!
It's a beautiful composition with so many details - great job!!

Thumbs up & good luck  :thumbup:
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moctown on flickr

#4 brick god

brick god

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 10:57 AM

I think it is so cool that you chose the getty. I live like 15 minutes away from it and take my family there all the time, and we always have a blast! It is a rather complex building and I think you did a good job!
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#5 Vindicare


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Posted 09 April 2012 - 05:38 PM

This...is...awesome! All the different buildings are recreated perfectly. They all look brilliant and everything is well built. The little pond with the entryway and the potted plants. The other pond with the 4 discs and the sculptures(?) on the opposite side.
Clone Army-147 & counting...

#6 unbornchikken


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Posted 09 April 2012 - 06:52 PM

View PostLegocrazy81, on 09 April 2012 - 05:38 PM, said:

The little pond with the entryway and the potted plants. The other pond with the 4 discs and the sculptures(?) on the opposite side.

To clarify, since I'm sure those who aren't familiar with the place may not quite understand it:

There's a dark bluish gray frog that is supposed to be the circular fountain that has rocks in the middle of it. It sits under a 2x2 Round Trans Blue Brick, but the pictures don't quite capture that.

The other fountain is flanked by trees on one side and the discs are to represent the umbrella tables and sitting areas on the other side. You can see how that's supposed to look here.

Thanks to everyone for your kind comments.  :classic: I'd love to hear from others, and constructive criticism is as welcome as praise, so please don't hesitate to comment.

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