September, the month to harvest grapes, isn’t just for the modern Virgo.

Libras and Scorpios are in on the labors of plowing and sowing fun for the month. Since the Middle Ages the zodiac symbols have shifted with changes in the months of the calendar. 

Zodiacal Sign of Virgo, about 1170s, Unknown. German, Hildesheim. J. Paul Getty Museum.
Woman Harvesting Grapes; Zodiacal Sign of a Libra
A Man Treading Grapes; Zodiacal Sign of Libra, early 1460s, Workshop of Willem Vrelant. J. Paul Getty Museum.
Plowing and Sowing; Zodiacal Sign of Scorpio, 1510-1520, Workshop of Master of James IV of Scotland. J. Paul Getty Museum.

From South Pole explorers to trusty companions, dogs throughout art history are just barking adorable. 

#NationalDogDay

Vida, about 1912, Herbert G. Ponting. J. Paul Getty Museum.
Shepherd with His Dog, about 1795, Johann Jakob Wilhelm Spangler. J. Paul Getty Museum.
Gravestone of Helena, about A.D. 150 - 200, Unknown. J. Paul Getty Museum.
Vessel with Youths and Their Dogs, about 490 B.C., Kleophrades Painter. J. Paul Getty Museum.
Dogs, about 1250 - 1260, Unknown. English. J. Paul Getty Museum.

This faithful pup naps during the long exposure. Now that’s trust. 
Portrait of a Seated Young Woman and Dog, 1845 - 1847, Unknown. J. Paul Getty Museum.

This faithful pup naps during the long exposure. Now that’s trust. 

Portrait of a Seated Young Woman and Dog, 1845 - 1847, Unknown. J. Paul Getty Museum.

Today is the anniversary of the fateful eruption of Vesuvius in AD 79.

Here are engravings of lava rocks and curious stones picked up on Mount Vesuvius in the 18th Century. 

Ribbons and colors and gold, oh my!

Zoom in and scroll around here.

Inhabited Initial B, 1153, Unknown. J. Paul Getty Museum. 

This is a zebu, known today as a Brahma bull.
Images of zebus and elephants represented connections to India, the farthest reach of Alexander the Great’s expansive empire.
Zebu, 200 - 150 B.C., Greek, Seleucia Pieria (in present-day Turkey). J. Paul Getty Museum. Gift of Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman.

This is a zebu, known today as a Brahma bull.

Images of zebus and elephants represented connections to India, the farthest reach of Alexander the Great’s expansive empire.

Zebu, 200 - 150 B.C., Greek, Seleucia Pieria (in present-day Turkey). J. Paul Getty Museum. Gift of Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman.

"Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us, or we find it not." 

—Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Art”.

The Perseid meteor shower is upon us!

Every year in mid-August, the Perseids seems to fly out of the constellation Perseus. Perseus, a Greek hero, is depicted here on his vase mid-pursuit of the winged gorgons.

Behave during this time, gorgons, or you might soon be missing your head.

Ladle with Perseus Chasing Gorgons, about 510 - 500 B.C., Attributed to the Theseus Painter. J. Paul Getty Museum.

Hesione who? 

Herakles rescues a king’s daughter, Hesione, from a raging sea monster sent by a spurned Poseidon. The myth mimics the well-known story of Perseus and Andromeda, but was never as popular in art and literature.

You can just see Herakles battling the monster at the bottom left of this ancient fresco. 

Fresco Fragment with Herakles and Hesione, about A.D. 70, Roman. The J. Paul Getty Museum

Louvre over!
On this day in 1793, the former royal residence was converted and opened to the public as Musée Central des Arts by the revolutionary government. The iconographic glass pyramid wasn’t added until 1989.
Today, the Louvre welcomes around 9 million guests every year.
Pavilion Mollien, the Louvre, Gustav Le Gray, 1859. The J. Paul Getty Museum

Louvre over!

On this day in 1793, the former royal residence was converted and opened to the public as Musée Central des Arts by the revolutionary government. The iconographic glass pyramid wasn’t added until 1989.

Today, the Louvre welcomes around 9 million guests every year.

Pavilion Mollien, the Louvre, Gustav Le Gray, 1859. The J. Paul Getty Museum

Shaped and painted to look like an ostrich egg, this terracotta was meant to mimic the luxury of an “exotic” vessel at just a fraction of the cost.
Jar Speckled Like an Ostrich Egg, 1450 - 1400 B.C., Unknown. Minoan, Crete. J. Paul Getty Museum.

Shaped and painted to look like an ostrich egg, this terracotta was meant to mimic the luxury of an “exotic” vessel at just a fraction of the cost.

Jar Speckled Like an Ostrich Egg, 1450 - 1400 B.C., Unknown. Minoan, Crete. J. Paul Getty Museum.

Millais called this painting “the picture with the dreadful blue-and-white page in the corner.” Do you agree? 

The Ransom, 1860–62, John Everett Millais. The J. Paul Getty Museum

What unexpected thing have you learned by working at a museum?

The more time you take with the art, the better. 

The first time I saw a work by James Turrell, my eyes totally deceived me. I walked into the room (Acton, at the Indianapolis Museum of Art) and saw a gray rectangle “painting,” but I was baffled and could not figure it out—I got closer and closer until my face was pressed against the wall next to it, trying to figure out what it was. When my friend stuck her arm into the painting and revealed the illusion (a square cut into the wall and lit to look flat), my mind was blown! You got me so good, James.

Also, always offer to take a family photo for the tourists!

What do you wish you could tell all people about yourself, museums, or life? 

Everyone is creative.

Emily, Education Technologist at the Getty, July 24, 2014

Hey mosaic lovers! Ever dreamed of making a mosaic at a Roman Villa?

Well, we need your help piecing together a mosaic this week! Join artist Karen Silton at the Getty this Monday, 11 am - 3 pm. Full details here!

Masked Harlequin, the commedia dell’arte’s leading man, lures an innocent, elegantly dressed young lady into the world of prostitution. She’s caught the eye of a displeased young man, dressed in dapper clothes. They stand out in this scene of costumed characters in exaggerated clothing. 

Gillot’s light, quick brushstrokes mimics the satirical subject and lighthearted portrayal of human folly.

Fashion Fridays explores art, history, and costume inspired by the exhibition Rococo to Revolution #NowOnView

Scene from the Italian Comedy (recto), about 1700, Claude Gillot. The J. Paul Getty Museum

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