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IT'S WILD OUT THERE: JOIN L.A.'S CULTURAL SUMMER SAFARI

The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles Zoo, Skirball Cultural Center,
and Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County partner for the first time
in a family passport program, through September 2, 2007

June 20, 2007

LOS ANGELES—Discover L.A.’s wild side with the new “Los Angeles’ Summer Cultural Safari” passport program designed to open minds and doors and encourage Southern California residents to take advantage of four unique regional attractions.

The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens, Skirball Cultural Center, and Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County are participating in the family passport program, which runs through September 2, 2007.  The program highlights the animal and insect-related exhibitions and events that all four institutions feature this summer.

To get started, all safari-goers need is a sense of adventure and a special “passport,” which guests have stamped at participating institutions.  Once all four stamps have been collected, guests can send their passports to the Getty to receive a prize.  Passports include a map of the Los Angeles area, highlighting each institution’s summer offerings.

“We feel this passport program will encourage links between the Getty and other popular institutions throughout Los Angeles and is a perfect opportunity to highlight each organization individually while also promoting the city as a unique cultural destination,” said Dr. Michael Brand, director of the J. Paul Getty Museum.  “We hope families will take advantage of the program throughout the course of this summer and visit each of the four institutions.”

Passports were sent out to members and/or the mailing list of each institution and are available to the general public at each participating location while supplies last.  The passport can also be downloaded from the Oudry’s Painted Menagerie section of the Getty Web site at www.getty.edu (under “Family Activities” on the “Events” page).

“This is a great convergence of cultural, historical, and zoological treasures,” said Laura Zucker, Executive Director, Los Angeles County Arts Commission.  “Every parent in LA should take full advantage of this amazing opportunity to make the summer memorable for their family.”

The Getty Museum’s Oudry’s Painted Menagerie, on view through September 2 at the Getty Center, provided the inspiration for this distinctive collaboration.  The exhibition of works by Europe’s greatest 18th century animal painter, Jean-Baptiste Oudry, includes life-size paintings of a lion, an antelope, a leopard, exotic fowl, and a famous touring rhinoceros named Clara.

Activities related to Oudry’s Painted Menagerie and the complementary exhibition Medieval Beasts (at the Getty Center through July 20), include a Family Festival on August 4, the Getty’s Garden Concerts for Kids on August 11, 12, 18, 19, 25, and 26, Family Storytelling every Saturday through September 1 and Family Art Lab, Thursdays through Sundays until July 15. Additionally on Friday, June 22, Michael Dee, general curator of the Los Angeles Zoo and an expert in rhino conservation, will host two afternoon tours of the Oudry exhibition and discuss the historical fascination with exotic animals, particularly Oudry’s life-size painting Rhinoceros.

Just down the 405 freeway, the Skirball Cultural Center offers Noah’s Ark at the Skirball, a new, interactive destination for children and families featuring nearly 400 fancifully handcrafted animals – from life-sized elephants and giraffes to snow leopards, flamingos and iguanas.   And what could be more appropriate than linking both museum experiences with the Los Angeles Zoo and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County?

At the Los Angeles Zoo, Oudry’s Painted Menagerie will be represented with art displays and descriptions at animal exhibitions that correspond with specific paintings, including the rhinoceros, lion, tiger, crane, and cassowary.  After getting to know these animals in greater depth, visitors to the Zoo can continue their adventure by getting face-to-fang with venomous spiders and creepy crawlers from around the world in the exhibition Spider City, which features more than 25 species of spiders, including black widows, tarantulas, and the brown recluse.

“As an organization dedicated to the conservation of wildlife, we are thrilled to be partnering with cultural institutions like the Getty to celebrate animals in art and the imagination,” said Connie Morgan, president of the Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association. “The passport program is a rich collaboration where we can explore the imaginative connections between art history, natural history, and human relationships with wildlife through the ages.”

Visitors to the Skirball Cultural Center can immerse themselves in a favorite childhood tale when they step into the 8,000-square-foot gallery space of Noah’s Ark at the Skirball. Inspired by the ancient flood story, which has parallels in hundreds of cultures around the world, Noah’s Ark offers a multi-sensory experience for generations to enjoy together.  Visitors board a gigantic wooden ark to play, climb, build and collaborate alongside strikingly designed animals – and imagine taking a journey from stormy world to dry land. The Skirball has lined up for summer a variety of family programs and summer day camps, live performances and special events to complement the exhibition.

The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County joins the Summer Safari with one of the world’s most extensive collections of natural and cultural history.  Visitors can partake in educational activities and interact with artifacts, specimens, live fish, turtles, and lizards and insects from around the world at the Ralph M. Parsons Discovery Center and the Ralph M. Parsons Bug Spot.  The Butterfly Pavilion, open through September 3, features 30 species of free-flying butterflies in a beautifully landscaped outdoor space.

Admission to the Getty Center is free and on-site parking is $8.  The Los Angeles Zoo is offering $2 off the $10 adult admission and $1 off the $5 admission for children 2-12 to visitors who present their passport at the admission gates.  Admission to the Skirball Cultural Center is $10 for adults, $7 for seniors and full-time students and $5 for children 2-12. Admission to the Natural History Museum is $9 for adults, $6.50 for seniors, students and adolescents 13-17, and $2 for children 5-12. Special ticketed admission for the Butterfly Pavilion is as follows: $3 for adults, $2 for seniors and students and $1 for children ages 5 to 12. Tickets are sold in half-hour time slots throughout the day. Natural History Museum members receive free admission and the first available tickets.

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MEDIA CONTACT:
Beth Laski
Getty Communications
310-440-7360
blaski@getty.edu

About the Getty:

The J. Paul Getty Trust is an international cultural and philanthropic institution devoted to the visual arts that features the Getty Conservation Institute, the Getty Foundation, the J. Paul Getty Museum, and the Getty Research Institute. The J. Paul Getty Trust and Getty programs serve a varied audience from two locations: the Getty Center in Los Angeles and the Getty Villa in Malibu.

Sign up for e-Getty at www.getty.edu/subscribe/ to receive free monthly highlights of events at the Getty Center and the Getty Villa via e-mail, or visit our event calendar for a complete calendar of public programs.

Visiting the Getty Center: The Getty Center is open Tuesday through Friday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. It is closed Monday and major holidays. Admission to the Getty Center is always free. Parking is $15 per car, but free after 5pm on Saturdays and for evening events throughout the week. No reservation is required for parking or general admission. Reservations are required for event seating and groups of 15 or more. Please call 310-440-7300 (English or Spanish) for reservations and information. The TTY line for callers who are deaf or hearing impaired is 310-440-7305. The Getty Center is at 1200 Getty Center Drive, Los Angeles, California.