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Getty Villa construction records, 1960, 1964, 1968-1986, undated (bulk 1971-1974)

To access physical materials at the Getty, go to the library catalog record for this collection and click "Request an Item." Click here for general library access policy. See the Administrative Information section of this finding aid for access restrictions specific to the records described below. Please note, some of the records may be stored off site; advanced notice is required for access to these materials.
Guide to the J. Paul Getty Museum, Getty Villa Construction Records, 1960, 1964, 1968-1986 and undated (bulk 1971-1974)
Series I. Correspondence, 1968-1981 1.45 linear feet (3.5 boxes)
Records comprise correspondence, memoranda, reports, notes, a few specifications, photographs, and oversize plats, dating from 1968 to 1975, pertaining to the conceptual development and construction of the J. Paul Getty Museum (Villa). Much of the correspondence consists of copies of outgoing letters and original incoming letters maintained by either Norris Bramlett or Stephen Garrett. The majority of the correspondence maintained by Bramlett passed between Getty and members of the Trust/Museum as they discussed the development and construction of the Villa, recording the evolution of planning from a proposed expansion of the existing ranch house museum wing to the construction of the Villa museum. Most of the correspondence maintained by Garrett consists of copies of outgoing letters and original incoming letters Garrett wrote, received, or was copied in on during the course of working for J. Paul Getty and with the staff of the Getty Trust and Museum on the Villa project. The materials contain discussions the Villa design, construction, maintenance, landscaping and irrigation, boundaries and easements, security, and various administrative and staff issues.
Organization
These records are organized into two subseries:
Series I.A. Chronological correspondence, 1968-1975;
Series I.B. Stephen Garrett correspondence, 1969-1981.
Series I.A. Chronological correspondence, 1968-1975 0.42 linear feet (1 box)
Records comprise correspondence, memoranda, reports, and an oversize plan of Los Liones Canyon, dating from 1968 to 1975, pertaining to the conceptual development and construction of the J. Paul Getty Museum (Villa). Much of the correspondence consists of copies of outgoing letters and original incoming letters maintained by Norris Bramlett. The majority of the correspondence passed between Getty and members of the Trust/Museum as they discussed the development and construction of the Villa. Memoranda were often written to the file to record conversations with and instructions from Getty. The documents record the evolution of planning from discussion of a simple expansion of the existing ranch house museum wing to the construction of what became the Villa museum.
Specific subjects under discussion include the planned design of the Villa and issues such as security and security systems, gallery arrangement and the display of objects, the flow of visitors, environmental controls, potential maintenance issues, decoration, lighting, staff work space, parking, and access to storage areas. The files also include discussions of building orientation, the development and approval of plans and blueprints, land ownership, zoning and permits, landscaping, construction materials, cost estimates, the sale of Getty Oil stock to fund the construction, preparations for the opening, instructions from Getty on the creation of a museum art catalog and, occasionally, instructions from Getty on the purchase of art.
Letters and memos were predominantly written by Norris Bramlett, Stephen Garrett, J. Paul Getty, Burton Fredericksen, Norman Neuerburg, and Langdon & Wilson (architects). On infrequent occasions correspondence is generated by Janet Fox, Carole Tier, Frank Whitworth, and various consultants.
Some files in this subseries are closely related to the next subseries. Each set of files contains unique documents, but some of the correspondence is duplicated. Sometimes an incoming letter or cc. from, for example, Stephen Garrett maintained in this subseries is found as a copy of an outgoing letter in the next subseries, likewise a copy of an outgoing letter to Garrett in these files seems to have its original in the next subseries. The same is true for some of the correspondence between Garrett and other members of the Trust and Museum as well as with Langdon & Wilson.
Arrangement
Files are listed in chronological order. The original order of the records, however, appears to have been in reverse chronological order and the documents within the files remain in reverse chronological order.
Box Folder
1986.IA.08-1 1 April-December 1968
1986.IA.08-1 2 January-July 1969
General note
[An oversize item has been rehoused into 1986.IA.08-37.]
1986.IA.08-1 3 August-December 1969
General note
[File also contains a formal report (Report #1) from Stephen Garrett to J. Paul Getty on the Museum construction following Garrett's exploratory trip to Los Angeles in July 1969.]
1986.IA.08-1 4 January-July 1970
General note
(Correspondence in March 1970 first mentions the Villa dei Papiri)
1986.IA.08-1 5 August 1970
1986.IA.08-1 6 September-October 1970
1986.IA.08-1 7 November-December 1970
1986.IA.08-1 8 January-November 1971
1986.IA.08-1 9 December 1971-February 1972
1986.IA.08-1 10 March-October 1972
1986.IA.08-1 11 November 1972-December 1973
1986.IA.08-1 12 January-June 1975
Series I.B. Stephen Garrett correspondence, 1969-1981 1.03 linear feet (2 boxes)
The records consist of correspondence, memoranda, notes, a few specifications, photographs, and an oversize plat, dating from 1969 to 1981 and maintained by Stephen Garrett, that pertain to the conceptual development and construction of the J. Paul Getty Museum (Villa). Much of the correspondence consists of copies of outgoing letters and original incoming letters Garrett wrote, received, or was copied in on during the course of working for J. Paul Getty and with the staff of the Getty Trust and Museum on the Villa construction project. The majority of the records were created while Garrett was in Getty's employ but still lived and worked in London, prior to his move to Southern California to work for the Museum as Deputy Director in July 1973.
The materials cover various aspects and details of the Villa planning and design, construction, maintenance, landscaping and irrigation, establishment of boundaries and easements, security, and various administrative and staff issues. Some documents are annotated.
Some files in this subseries are closely related to the previous subseries. Each set of files contains unique documents, but some of the correspondence is duplicated. Sometimes an incoming letter from, for example, Norris Bramlett maintained in this subseries is found as a copy of an outgoing letter in the previous subseries, likewise a copy of an outgoing letter to Bramlett, or a member of his staff, in these files seems to have its original in the previous subseries. The same is true for some of the correspondence with other members of the Trust and Museum as well as with Langdon & Wilson. Additionally, two of the files, one concerning Langdon & Wilson and one concerning Norman Neuerburg appear to have been maintained by Norris Bramlett, though Stephen Garrett appears prominently in the documents.
[One oversized plat needs to be rehoused, photographs need to be rehoused.]
Arrangement
Records are arranged either by correspondent or by subject matter. Some of the letters that were less well organized were refiled, and in some cases subject file titles were invented to describe folder contents. Within folders, records are in reverse chronological order.
Box Folder
1986.IA.08-2 1 Benton, Garth, 1971-1973
1986.IA.08-2 2-3 Bramlett, Norris 1969-1972 (2 files)
Dinwiddie Construction Company:
Box Folder
1986.IA.08-2 4-5 1971-1972 (2 files)
General note
[Records are generally in reverse chronological order by correspondent (Bill Gatewood (site supervisor) or Ted Smith) within the file.]
Box
2009.IA.28-1 Bronze room (air conditioning issue), 1979-1981
Box Folder
1986.IA.08-2 6 Fredericksen, Burton, 1970-1973
1986.IA.08-2 7 Fredericksen, Burton and Wilson, Gillian, 1972-1973
1986.IA.08-2 8 Frel, Jiri 1973
1986.IA.08-2 9 Getty, J. Paul, 1969-1973
1986.IA.08-2 10-13 Langdon and Wilson, 1970-1973 (4 files)
General note
[This folder seems to be Norris Bramlett's file on Langdon and Wilson, Stephen Garrett figures prominently.]
Box Folder
1986.IA.08-3 1-5 Neuerburg, Norman, 1970-1974 (5 files)
General note
[Includes brief, handwritten resume of Neuerburg]
General note
[Folder 5 seems to be Norris Bramlett's file on Norman Neuerburg, Stephen Garrett figures prominently.]
1986.IA.08-3 6 Ptolemy, Bruce (fountain designer), 1972
Wemple, Emmet (landscape architect):
Box Folder
1986.IA.08-3 7 1971-1973
Box
2009.IA.28-1 1973-1976
Box Folder
1986.IA.08-3 8 BBC film, 1972
1986.IA.08-3 9 Cracks in Peristyle Wall, 1973
1986.IA.08-3 10 Early discussions, 1969-1970
1986.IA.08-3 11 Excavations (Herculaneum), 1971
1986.IA.08-3 12 Fire suppression, 1972
1986.IA.08-3 13 Gatehouse, 1973
1986.IA.08-3 14 Graphics consultant, 1972-1973
1986.IA.08-3 15 Insurance, 1973
1986.IA.08-3 16 Los Liones Canyon, Sunset Mesa exit easements, 1972-1973
General note
[Oversized item has been rehoused into 1986.IA.08-37]
1986.IA.08-3 17 Marbles, 1972-1973
1986.IA.08-3 18 Mechanical systems, 1970-1971, 1973
1986.IA.08-3 19 Moulder Brothers, 1974
1986.IA.08-3 20 Pool Expenses (Bruce Ptolemy), 1971-1973
1986.IA.08-3 21 Ranch House security, 1972
1986.IA.08-3 22 Replica furniture, 1972-1973
General note
(Portions of the correspondence are in Italian.)
1986.IA.08-3 23 Replica statuary, 1972-1973
1986.IA.08-3 24 Restoration (John Brealey), 1971
1986.IA.08-3 25 Security, 1971-1973


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