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Getty Research Institute Director Thomas W. Gaehtgens to Retire




After a decade as the Getty Research Institute’s director, Thomas W. Gaehtgens has announced that he will retire next year. Gaehtgens plans to travel to Berlin, to pursue independent research projects.

Gaehtgens first joined the Los Angeles–based institution in 2007. In his time there, he helped acquire a number of archival materials, including the papers of architect Frank Gehry. In 2011, he finalized the acquisition of the Harald Szeemann Archive and Library, a sizable resource with enough documents that, if stacked together, would span 1,500 feet.

“It has been an outstanding privilege to serve for so many years the philanthropic mission of the Getty, as the donor himself expressed it, to extend ‘the advancement of knowledge and appreciation of the fine art’ at this unique ensemble of collaborating institutions,” Gaehtgens said in a statement.

A release for Gaehtgen’s departure also contained some exciting news: the Getty Research Institute will be having an exhibition about Szeemann in early 2018, which means there’s still more than half a year to start brushing up on the curator’s landmark 1969 show “When Attitudes Become Form.”

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