Which Foundation is Investing Millions to Connect Art from Los Angeles to Latin America?

When the J. Paul Getty Foundation organized "Pacific Standard Time: Art in LA 1945-1980" three years ago, it hoped that collaboration of 68 exhibitions, performances and public art festivals would help to tell the underexamined story of Los Angeles’ art scene, which the foundation achieved with a vengeance. The Getty Foundation’s project was featured in more than 40 publications and the initiative helped generate an estimated $280.5 million boom for Southern California.  

Now the foundation, which has an extensive history of helping individuals and institutes advance the understanding and preservation of LA’s visual arts scene, hopes to outdo itself a new initiative entitled, Pacific Standard Time: L.A./L.A (Los Angeles/Latin America) which will open in 2017.  

“With its historical roots in Latin America and its diverse population, Los Angeles embraces a global culture, said Jim Cuno, president and CEO of the J. Paul Getty Trust. “In a way that is possible only in Los Angeles, Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA raises complex and provocative issues about present-day relations between north and south and the rapidly changing social and cultural fabric of Southern California.”

So how exactly does the foundation plan to make that connection?

Through this series of thematically linked exhibitions, Pacific Standard Time: L.A./L.A. will explore the traditions of Latino and Latin American modern and contemporary art as well as art from the ancient world and pre-modern era. The project will also provide information on topics ranging from luxury objects from the pre-Columbian Americas to 20th-century Afro-Brazilian art and “renegade” alternative spaces in Mexico City.

“We anticipate Pacific Standard Time: L.A./L.A. will produce new knowledge and insights about a wide range of Latin American and Latino art. This art deserves to be better known by audiences who will have the opportunity to view the exhibitions in dialogue with one another,” said Deborah Marrow, director of the Getty Foundation.

So far, the foundation has invested $5 million in grants to 46 California-based institutions and will help them plan their own exhibits on different aspects of Latin American art. Some of the institutions that received research and planning grants include: Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA); Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles (MOCA); Hammer Museum; Chicano Studies Research Center at UCLA; The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens; Laguna Art Museum; Autry National Center for the American West; MAK Center for Art and Architecture at the Schindler House; Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego (MCASD); Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA); Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA); and the Santa Barbara Museum of Art.

The Getty will also offer three exhibitions at the Getty Center.