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Blog #4 Thematic

My visit to the Getty Villa Museum was like traveling back in time to Herculaneum, Italy and visiting a Roman home called Villa dei Papiri.  The Getty Villa Museum was designed to be an exact replica of the original home that once existed before Villa dei Papiri was destroyed by a volcano.  The highlight of this villa was the outer peristyle which is located in the back of the museum.

The marble flooring inside the museum leads visitors to the courtyard garden.  The garden is enclosed by a rectangular structure with rows of columns and elaborate marble flooring called a peristyle.  Inside the peristyle the walls are painted by a techniques called Fresco.  The Fresco paintings vary in subject matter. The ceilings are decorated with a grid pattern of three dimensional gold flowers and the gold flowers are framed by gold squares.  Traveling around the perimeter of the building there are several outlets that lead to the garden pathways.

The pathways that lead visitors through the garden take people in many different directions.  The design of the paths are so unique it is similar to a labyrinth.  Each pathway is encompassed by square cut shrubs.  Beyond the shrubs there are trees, ground cover, plants and bronze statues.  The bronze statues are replicas from the original Villa dei Papiri and are placed in the same area as they once were.

Lastly, is the rectangular pool that is 70 feet by 20 feet which is located in the center of the outer peristyle.  If one follows the path towards the trellis there is an opening to allow visitors to sit on the marble coping.  At each end of the pool is a bronze statue that sits above the water on top of stone.  Underneath the water lies bubblers that are strategically placed to emphasizes the movement of water and allows for a constant soothing sound of running water.

Visiting the Villa dei Papiri was an unexpected experience that I felt privileged to attend. This was an adventure back into time for visitors to enjoy an exact replica of an exquisite Roman home.

Blog #3 Chronological

When I visited the Getty Villa Museum in the Pacific Palisades I spent my time in the outer peristyle garden. Upon entering the outdoor garden the glistening pool first caught my eye.  As I walked toward the pool there was a pathway that led to a seating area on the marble coping of the pool.  The rectangular pool appeared to be 70 feet long by 20 feet wide and at the end of each side of the pool it was framed by a semi circle with a bronze statue protruding out of the water.  I was curious as to how the water was so blue and after a closer look I discovered that the bottom of the pool was painted blue.

Next I strolled down the pathway to observes the plant life surrounding the pool.  I noticed that the plants were enclosed by perfectly trimmed square shrub hedges that lead off into pathways of various directions such as horizontal, vertical, circular and zigzag.  The pool’s garden area contained planters that held a variety of plants, trees, and different ground covers.

After adventuring through the garden, there was an elaborate balcony at the far end which had a panoramic view of the Pacific Ocean. The balcony was framed by rows of columns.  Each column had the same decorative design.  The top of the columns had a Corinthian Capital which was inspired by the plant Acanthus mollis.  The shaft of the columns were fluted and the bottoms had a doric base.  The floors of the balcony had several patterns that were made out of marble.  The outer peristyle of the Getty Villa was unlike any  museum garden experience that I had ever encountered.  Not only was I surrounded by many types of plant life but the atmosphere was very relaxing and I could spend hours in deep thought in this peaceful space.

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Blog Post #4: A little blue house at the top of a building is something you don’t see every day. UC San Diego had this interesting house on top of one of its buildings. It was also on the front cover of the pamphlet I got before the tour. I couldn’t wait to see this house and it just happened to be the last piece of the Stuart Collection we saw.

It was on the seventh floor of a building and it had a small garden at the entrance. The house was tilted sideways at the corner of the building and is only one small room. When you enter the little house everything seems to be normal but you can feel yourself trying to stay balanced. According to the tour guide, only one object in the house was straight. It isn’t noticeable and it makes it fun to try and figure out that it is the chandelier hanging from the ceiling. I noticed that most people felt dizzy after being in that house a few minutes.

When I walked back outside to the garden I almost fell because my body had gotten used to trying to find balance in the little house and then suddenly walking onto a balanced surface. The house was built this way because the artist wanted people to know what he felt like being so far away from home. The artist also did this so that the students that live on campus can get a feeling of what it’s like to be home when they feel homesick just as he did.

Blog Post #3: On the second day of the San Diego field trip, we visited UC San Diego. So far it had been a pretty good morning trying some Greek food for breakfast with a couple of friends. Before the start of the Stuart Collection tour, we had all received a pamphlet of the entire Stuart Collection. As I looked through it, the one thing that caught my attention was the picture of a little blue house at the top of a building. I couldn’t wait to see this house and it just happened to be the last piece of the Stuart Collection we saw. It was on the seventh floor of a building and it had a beautiful small garden at the entrance. The house was tilted sideways at the corner of the building. When you enter the little house, everything seems to be normal but you can feel yourself trying to stay balanced. According to the tour guide, only one object in the house was straight. It isn’t noticeable and it makes it fun to try and figure out that it is the chandelier hanging from the ceiling. I noticed that most people felt dizzy after being in that house a few minutes. When I walked back outside to the garden I almost fell because my body had gotten used to trying to find balance in the little house and then suddenly walking onto a balanced surface. The house was built this way because the artist wanted people to know what he felt like being so far away from home. The artist also did this so that the students that live on campus can get a feeling of what it’s like to be home when they feel homesick just as he did. In my opinion, this was the most interesting piece.

The U.S./Mexico border field trip was one filled with intense and forceful reflection. The scenery played a part in the emotional state I experienced that day, but more so, it was the idea of the gates and border itself that I had a reaction to. The concept of controlling people and limiting ones access is nothing shy of showcasing extreme authority. The notion of “No you can not enter” for some, contrasted to “Yes, welcome” for others, is a reality we all live with and yet we do not allow ourselves enough time to comprehend the weight of that idea. A government’s constraint upon a large group of people, and their free will, is deeply profound. As I stood on one side of the gate-watching people on the opposite side, I could not help but to think, why can I and they cannot. Suddenly, a forceful feeling of separation rushed over me. The differences between “me” and “them” were abruptly apparent, and frankly I did not like the feeling. I felt upsettingly fortunate. I felt confusingly capable. There was even moments of disheartening embarrassment. I experienced an abundance of thoughts and emotions that day, mostly related to the concept of control, but perhaps it was my reaction to these ideas and feelings that was most surprising. I went into this day knowing that it would be deep and emotional; these are weighty words, and yet they did not do justice my actual experience. I was taken back by my acknowledgement of the gates, the authority, and the separation. Truthfully I never felt that I had overlooked these ideas, in reality, I had. I now have a new outlook on my heart and minds capability of change. I have had an unanticipated understanding of what a humbling process is.

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Blog Post #4

                      Los Angeles Contemporary Museum of Art is one of the most famous landmark in the county of Los Angeles. A place where artist and visionaries displays their work of art, in the year of 2008 LACMA adopted the installation of lamp posts of Chris Burden and named as the Urban Light. Its location is at the front of the Museum end of the Ogden Drive. Consists of a couple hundred of lamp post with the vintage appearance and feel, it brings back on the streets of Los Angeles in the early 1900s. The exhibit is placed on a extruded rectangular concrete plane, which will take one step to interact with the installation. The lamp posts are formed in a grid pattern, increases the heights as it meets in the middles, and the bottom of each post has also has different designs. The exhibits a great example for defining a symmetry and asymmetry. Rhythmic is also one of the theme of the installation the way each post is static to one another. Symmetry can also show balance. If the plane is lifted in the air with one beam in the middle, it can settle and never tilt. The display of lamp post reminds the people despite their differences can form unity and coherence making each one valuable to one another.

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I visited the Border Field State Park during the San Diego road trip. We went for a one mile hiking in the park. The park is known for its border with Mexico. The border itself is an interesting landmark.

The hiking started with a mud route. Some of the mud in the park was highly contaminated. Therefore we had to be careful when walking. The one mile journey felt longer when I had to watch every step that I took.

When walking toward the beach, I saw the other side of the border. It is interesting to see cars and buildings in front of you while being in a different country and culture.

The beach was beautiful. However, it was not our destination. Therefore we continued walking south toward the border. There were a lot of trash and bad birds on the beach. I could sense that the beach is not really a joyful place for vacations.

The fence of the border appeared while we walked on the beach. I started to feel intense when I saw the fence, which continued from the land to the ocean. Moreover, the fence extends out to the ocean by miles under the water. The place creates a separation between the United States and Mexico. It is not often that we can see landscape being separated this way. The landscape was downhill towards the ocean, which was shaped clearly due to the fence. The Border Field State Park showed me how landscape is being manipulated by human. Human is now in charge over nature. The environment is constantly changing by human in order to fulfill our needs. Unfortunately, I think the changes are not for the best in most cases.

During the visit, I explored a park with actual danger. In addition, I witnessed a separation between culture and people. The experience is valuable for me to understand the world that I was not familiar with.

The visit to the Border Field State Park took place during our San Diego field trip. The whole visit spent more than four hours. It is a trip that improves our interactions with nature and helped us to understand landscape.

Our visit started in the morning. The park is hidden in the mountain so that we had to drive through narrow mud roads. An introduction of the park of was given by the docents. The introduction turned out to be important because of the highly contaminated mud that we had to watch for in the park.

After the introduction, we started our hiking in the park. Although the view in the park was not beautiful in the beginning of the hike, I felt like I was in an adventure of the nature. The route was narrow and rough. We walked for 30 minutes and discovered the beach. The transition from muddy routes to a beautiful beach made me felt that the hiking was meaningful.

The hiking continued on the beach. Change of environment made the hiking more comfortable. We were being able to appreciate the view of the ocean while walking toward our destination, which was the border of Mexico. The border did not take long for us to reach. The landscape at the border has mutable levels. I was lucky to stand close to the fence until the border portal informed us that we had to keep distance from the fence. Our group stayed at the fence and appreciated the view.

The time was close to noon, and we started to go back from the border. The walking felt harder on the way back since I was weakened from the walking before. The fence’s image was still in my mind on the way back. It is shocking for me that the fence extended so long and completely changed the landscape.

The visit of the park was focused on the fence of the border. The fence is a separation of landscape that is hard to find in other places.