October 18, 2016


 - (Press Release)

Julie Jaskol
Getty Communications
(310) 440-7607


The J. Paul Getty Medal Dinner LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 17: (L-R) Frank Gehry, Getty President and CEO James Cuno, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Yo-Yo Ma, Kayhan Kalhor, The Getty Board of Trustees Chair Maria Hummer-Tuttle and photographer Jack Shear pose during The J. Paul Getty Medal Dinner on October 17, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ryan Miller/Capture Imaging)


Attendees include Esa-Pekka Salonen, Agnes Gund, Frank Gehry,
Quincy Jones, John Williams, John Lithgow and others

LOS ANGELES – The J. Paul Getty Trust awarded the J. Paul Getty Medal to musician Yo-Yo Ma and, posthumously, to artist Ellsworth Kelly at a gathering of arts and community leaders at the Getty Center in Brentwood on Monday evening, October 17.
Esa-Pekka Salonen, Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor for London’s Philharmonia Orchestra and the Conductor Laureate for the Los Angeles Philharmonic, introduced Yo-Yo Ma, who was honored for his efforts to further understanding of the world’s diverse cultures.
Agnes Gund, president emerita of the Museum of Modern Art and trustee emerita of the J. Paul Getty Trust, introduced photographer Jack Shear, Ellsworth Kelly’s husband.  Mr. Kelly, who passed away late last year, was honored for paintings and sculptures of the highest quality and originality.
“Yo-Yo Ma is not only one of the world’s greatest musicians, he is one of our greatest ambassadors for international cultural understanding, and Ellsworth Kelly was among the most important artists of his generation. Through the Ellsworth Kelly Foundation he was a passionate advocate for conservation of art and cultural heritage around the world,” said J. Paul Getty Trust President and CEO James Cuno. “We are pleased and honored to award Yo-Yo Ma and Ellsworth Kelly the 2016 J. Paul Getty Medal.”
Said J. Paul Getty Trust Board President Maria Hummer-Tuttle, “As an international arts organization, the Getty is committed to the preservation of our shared cultural heritage and
aspires to achieve excellence in all it undertakes; this year’s Getty Medal recipients mirror that goal.”
In accepting the award, Mr. Ma said “It is a privilege to be associated with an institution that does so much to support the arts and to be with people who believe in the power of the arts and culture to help us pursue our higher aims.”
Accepting the award on behalf of his late husband, Mr. Shear said “People keep asking me about Ellsworth.  His life and my life are a celebration.  He’s all around me and in the world. Thank you for this honor.”
More than 350 guests from the worlds of art, music, government and business attended the dinner in a pavilion on the plaza of the landmark Getty Center. Attendees included Esa-Pekka Salonen, Agnes Gund, architect Frank Gehry, composers Quincy Jones, John Williams and Thomas Adès; artists Chuck Arnoldi, Tacita Dean, Thomas Demand, Lari Pittman, and Bill Viola; actor John Lithgow, soprano Renée Fleming, musician Kayhan Kalhor, LA County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl and State Senator Ben Allen, chair of the Joint Committee on the Arts.
The evening included performances by Mr. Ma and members of the Silk Road Ensemble.
The J. Paul Getty Medal was established in 2013 by the trustees of the J. Paul Getty Trust to honor extraordinary contributions to the practice, understanding and support of the arts
Past recipients are Harold M. Williams and Nancy Englander, who helped create the Getty as we know it today; influential cultural leader Lord Jacob Rothschild; and Pritzker Prize-winning architect Frank Gehry.
This year’s Getty Medal celebration is supported by the Board of Trustees of the J. Paul Getty Trust and the Getty President’s International Council, with generous support also provided by Arlene Schnitzer, Jordan Schnitzer, and The Harold & Arlene Schnitzer CARE Foundation; as well as corporate sponsors Accenture, J.P. Morgan Private Bank, and Neiman Marcus; and JUSTIN Wines, Landmark Wines, and FIJI Water.
A selection of photos is available here.

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The J. Paul Getty Trust is an international cultural and philanthropic institution devoted to the visual arts that includes the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Getty Research Institute, the Getty Conservation Institute, and the Getty Foundation. 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 Pacific Palisades.


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