Student: Danny Franco
Professor: Dr. Caren Stayer
December 12, 2014
For my cultural event, I visited the J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center in Los Angeles, California on Thursday, December 11, 2014. I had originally planned to visit the National Museum of Art and History in Washington D.C., but I found myself in Los Angeles due to the birth of my Grandson. I attended the museum by myself. The Getty Museum was originally started in 1954 in J. Paul Getty’s home in Pacific Palisades. After Getty’s death, the Getty Trust took over the museum. The collection eventually outgrew the site and the Getty Center was built in the Santa Monica Mountains above interstate 405.
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Peter Paul Rubens was a Flemish painter that lived between 1577 and 1640. Rubens was commissioned in the early 1620s to do a series of paintings and tapestries referred to as the Triumph of the Eucharist series. Infanta Clara Eugenia, ruler of Southern Netherlands and Spanish royal family member, commissioned the Triumph of the Eucharist as a Counter-Reformation work. Sayre (2012), describes the Counter-Reformation as the Roman Catholic Church’s self-defense action to strike back at the fundamental ideas defended by reformists and to institute reforms of its own.
The Rubens work I focused on was a painting titled The Entombment. The painting caught my attention from the moment I laid eyes on it. It depicts the moment when Christ is placed into the tomb, after the Crucifixion and before the Resurrection. The painting shows the body of Christ being held up by both John the Evangelist and Mary, the mother of Christ as she looks up to heaven. Mary Magdalene weeps in the background while Mary, the mother of James the Younger and Joseph bows her head in sorrow. I felt very emotional as I took in this painting. The graphic portrayal of Christ in death made me think about the horror of the way he died. The battered flesh depicts the torture and the depth of the wounds add to the effect. The body of Christ has a blue-green tint to it, making it very