You can’t keep a good idea down. The Getty knew it had a fantastic idea a few years ago by starting Pacific Standard Time, the sweeping roster of exhibitions and programs at 68 arts institutions across Southern California that in 2011 chronicled art in Los Angeles from 1945 to 1980. It also drew in more than 70 private art galleries in Culver City, Santa Monica, West Hollywood and the Greater Los Angeles area, which staged more than 125 exhibitions.
Not wanting that brand to die, the Getty promptly said last summer that it would continue the effort with a run of shows on California architecture. It warned that the original PST took years to organize, though, and that version 2.0 would be smaller.
In September, a press release suggested that Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in L.A. would involve nine exhibitions, plus “accompanying programs and events” in and around Los Angeles between April and July of this year. At one point, Getty Foundation head Deborah Marrow told me that the Getty would split about $1 million on grantees in the partnership.
Fast forward to now: The Getty is out with new information — the roster has grown to 11 exhibitions and the Foundation has doled out $3.6 million in grants to 16 organizations for exhibitions, publications and programming. I suspect that galleries or others may figure out a way to participate, just as they did last time. This year’s version, though, will be much more manageable. (And btw, the new subject goes along with the Getty Conservation Institute’s Conserving Modern Architecture Initiative.
Here are the architecture exhibition partners: the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the Museum of Contemporary Art; the Hammer Museum; the Getty; the A+D Architecture and Design Museum; the Art, Design & Architecture Museum, UC Santa Barbara; the W. Keith and Janet Kellogg University Art Gallery at Cal Poly Pomona; the MAK Center for Art and Architecture; and the Southern California Institute of Architecture. The other programming partners are the Center for Land Use Interpretation; Community Art Resources, Inc.; The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens; the Los Angeles Conservancy; the Los Angeles Philharmonic; Machine Project; Pasadena Heritage; and UCLA Architecture and Urban Design.
You find the whole list of exhibitions in the new press release, and more information about them here. And of course there’s a separate website.
The Getty’s own show, Overdrive: L.A. Constructs the Future, 1940–1990, is called “the first major museum exhibition to survey Los Angeles’s built environment and rapid postwar evolution into one of the most populous and influential industrial, economic and creative capitals in the world.”
As others catch my eye, I’ll may write about some of the individual projects in the weeks ahead.
The question is whether this is enough to keep the brand not only alive but also sexy. Or will it disappoint those who went to the first PST? Can 11 exhibitions and other programming combine to make a critical mass? We won’t know until we see the contents of the exhibitions.