Museum Home Past Exhibitions Jean-Antoine Houdon

November 4, 2003–January 25, 2004 at the Getty Center

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All events are free and are held in the Harold M. Williams Auditorium, unless otherwise noted. Seating reservations are required. For reservations and information, please call (310) 440-7300 or use the reservation buttons below. Tickets are available on-site or by phone.

Artist-at-Work Demonstrations
Drop by as artist Jonathan Bickart demonstrates techniques used to make terracotta sculpture.
Thursdays: November 6 and 20; December 4 and 11
Sundays: November 9, 16, and 23; December 7 and 14
1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Museum Courtyard

A number of works related to the exhibition are featured on the Museum's Audioguide, available in the Entrance Hall.

Exhibition Tours
One-hour exhibition overviews, led by gallery teachers, are offered Tuesdays through Sundays at 1:30 p.m. beginning November 11. Meet under the stairs in the Museum Entrance Hall.

Gallery Course: Houdon and the Cult of Celebrity
This two-part, discussion-based gallery course, led by Anne Iverson from the Department of European Sculpture, takes an in-depth look at the exhibition and discusses the ways in which Houdon successfully crafted his own reputation, as well as those of his famous sitters. No experience necessary. Limited to 18 participants.

Tuesdays, December 2 and 9
10:00 – 11:30 a.m.
Exhibitions Pavilion
Reservations available beginning November 25, 9:00 a.m. Pacific Time.

The First Statuary in the World: Jean-Antoine Houdon (1741 – 1828)
Anne L. Poulet, Director of the Frick Collection and guest curator of the exhibition, discusses the role Houdon played in portraying the important figures of Europe and America and the international clientele who enthusiastically acquired his sculptures.
Thursday, November 6, 7:00 p.m.

Jean-Antoine Houdon: America's First Great Sculptor
Dean Walker, the Henry P. McIlhenny Senior Curator of European Decorative Arts and Sculpture, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, discusses Houdon's brilliant portraits of the Founding Fathers, including Franklin, Washington, and Jefferson, to illuminate the role of sculpted portraits and their various meanings for both famous sitters and ambitious sculptor alike.
Thursday, December 4, 7:00 p.m.

Bust of Louise Brongniart / Houdon

Gordon Getty Concert
French Music from the Age of the Enlightenment
Founded in 1973 by five graduates of the Juilliard School of Music, the Aulos Ensemble has created a new awareness for the rich rewards of performance on "original" instruments and collaborations with leading artists in authentic performance practices from the United States and Europe.
Tickets: $20; $15 students/seniors
Saturday, November 22, 8:00 p.m.

Point-of-View Talks
Talks are held at 6:00 and 7:30 p.m. in the Exhibitions Pavilion. Sign up at the Museum Information Desk beginning at 4:30 p.m.

Robert Graham, a sculptor known for his large-scale bronze monuments, including the great bronze doors of the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in Los Angeles, speaks about the exhibition.
Friday, December 12

Robbie Conal, a guerrilla poster artist whose satirical posters deal with contemporary political issues, discusses the exhibition.
Friday, January 16

Exhibition Catalogue
Jean-Antoine Houdon: Sculptor of the Enlightenment
By Anne L. Poulet

This 384-page catalogue of the exhibition is published by the University of Chicago Press in association with the National Gallery of Art, Washington. (Cloth: $85)
Available in the Getty Museum Bookstore or by calling (310) 440-7059.

Related Exhibition
Casting Characters: Portraits and Studies of Heads
November 4, 2003 – February 1, 2004
Museum, East Pavilion
Artists throughout history have been fascinated with the human face, as seen in the numerous portraits, caricatures, and drawings of heads featured in this exhibition. Whether these faces were destined to become portraits or figures in a narrative composition, artists strove to create vivid characters and personalities in their studies of facial expression. The variety of works on view showcases the breadth of the Getty's collection with examples that span the sixteenth through the nineteenth centuries. Featured are a number of recent acquisitions, including Georges Seurat's Madame Seurat, the Artist's Mother, Giovanni Battista Tiepolo's Head of a Man, and Paul Gauguin's Head of a Tahitian Woman.