April 09, 2015

Closing April 19: World War I: War of Images, Images of War

The exhibition exploring the propaganda developed by warring nations as well as major modern artists’ first-hand accounts has brought more than 150,000 visitors to the Getty Research Institute

At the Getty Center
through April 19, 2015
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Amy Hood
Getty Communications
(310) 440-6427

Left: Kartinki (Pictures -- The Russian War with the Germans, 1914, Hand-colored lithograph, The Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles. Middle: Detail of I Have You My Captain. You Won’t Fall, 1917, Color lithograph. Paul Iribe (French, 1883-1935). The Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles. Right: Detail of Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, 1917, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. Ernst Ludwig Kirchner Sketchbooks, 1917–1932. The Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles.
LOS ANGELES – Since the Getty Research Institute tripled its exhibition space in December 2013, the number of visitors to the new GRI galleries has increased with each exhibition. World War I: War of Images, Images of War, which closes on April 19, 2015, is the third exhibition since the expansion and has been tremendously popular, drawing more than 150,000 visitors to date, more than any exhibition at the GRI.

On view since, November 18 2014, World War I: War of Images, Images of War examines the art and visual culture of the First World War. Drawn principally from the GRI’s Special Collections, and including key loans, the exhibition demonstrates the distinctive ways in which combatant nations utilized visual propaganda against their enemies and explores how individual artists developed their own visual language to convey and cope with the gruesome horrors they witnessed.
The Trench, Félix Vallotton (Swiss, 1865-1925), woodcut. The Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles

Featuring the artists Umberto Boccioni, Max Beckmann, Otto Dix, George Grosz, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Fernand Léger, Filippo Tommaso Marinetti, Natalia Goncharova, Félix Vallotton, among many others, the exhibition contains 150 objects that represent a range of media, including satirical illustrated journals, print portfolios, postcards, photographs, and firsthand accounts such as a war diary, correspondence from the front, and "trench art" made by soldiers. The work on view is primarily from Germany, France, Italy, Russia and the United States.

“World War I was as much a war of visual culture as it was a war of geo-politics,” said Thomas W. Gaehtgens, director of the Getty Research Institute. “Because our Special Collections are rich in material from Europe at the time, the GRI is uniquely positioned to tell the story of the role that imagery played in the start of World War I as well as the impact of the war on art and artists."

World War I: War of Images, Images of War is is curated by Thomas W. Gaehtgens, Director of the GRI; Nancy Perloff, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Collections at the GRI; Anja Foerschner, Research Specialist at the GRI; Gordon Hughes, Mellon Assistant Professor, Department of Art History, Rice University; and Philipp Blom, independent scholar.

 The Englishman and His Globe, Thomas Theodor Heine (1867–1948), Color lithograph Simplicissimus vol. 19, no. 28 (October 13, 1914): cover. © 2014 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn.

The exhibition will travel to the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum at Washington University in St. Louis in fall 2015 and is accompanied by the book Nothing but the Clouds Unchanged: Artists in World War I, published by Getty Publications in fall of 2014.

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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 Malibu.

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