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Getty Research Institute California Video exhibition project files and oral history recordings, 2006-2008

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Getty Research Institute California Video exhibition project files and oral history recordings, 2006-2008

Administrative History and Project Background

The Getty Research Institute (GRI) is an operating program of the J. Paul Getty Trust, a not-for-profit educational, cultural and philanthropic organization dedicated to the visual arts. Originally established in 1983 as the Getty Center for the History of Art and the Humanities (GCHAH), the objective of the GCHAH was to foster advanced research in art, its history, diversity, and meaning in culture by engaging scholars from various disciplines in the humanities. In 1996, in order to avoid confusion with the soon-to-open Getty Center, the GCHAH was renamed the Getty Research Institute for the History of Art and the Humanities and in 2000, the program's name was shortened to the Getty Research Institute.

The GRI's mission is to further knowledge and advance understanding of the visual arts and their various histories through advanced research and scholarship, and through its activities and resources, provide a unique environment for research, critical inquiry, and scholarly exchange. The GRI's Research Library, consisting of over one million books, periodicals, study photographs, auction catalogs and special collections of rare and unique materials, as well as its online resources and databases, serve an international community of scholars and the interested public. The GRI also provides intellectual leadership through its research projects, exhibitions, and publication programs and provides service to a wide range of scholars worldwide through residencies, fellowships, hosted lectures and symposia, and its innovative digital reference tools. Through all of its programs and activities, the GRI endeavors to provide resources, expertise, and a collaborative environment for art-historical research and publication.

Through the GRI's multidisciplinary programming, first from the department of Contemporary Programs and Research (CPR) and later, its successor, the Department of Architecture and Contemporary Art (DACA), the GRI worked to advance art history scholarship of contemporary art, including sound art, audiovisual documentation of personal art, experimental music, and dance as well as a focus on the birth of video as an artistic medium around the world. In December 2005, The GRI acquired the video archive from the Long Beach Museum of Art, which increased the GRI's video art holdings to one of the world's largest. The idea for the California Video exhibition, which was co-organized and co-sponsored by CPR with the J. Paul Getty Museum, arose from the acquisition of the Long Beach Museum of Art Video Archive. The exhibition, a comprehensive history of video art in California over four decades, was open at the Getty Center from March 15 to June 8, 2008. View California Video exhibition website online

In conjunction with the the California Video exhibition, the GRI also presented the California Video Screening Series in Spring 2008. Each screening, organized by a guest curator, expressed an alternative view of the diverse history of video art in California and featured several works and included lectures or conversations presented by the hosts of the events.

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