The Getty Center
Family festival at the Getty Center

Family festivals offer a day of celebration and discovery inspired by exhibitions at the Getty Center. Each unique festival features performances by local dance and music groups, storytelling, art-making workshops, and gallery activities.

Next in the series


Family Festival Celebrating
Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA

Date: Saturday, October 21, 2017
Time: 10:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m.
Admission: Free; no ticket required.

Explore Latin America through a day of interactive fun! Make your own golden pre-Columbian treasures in a hands-on workshop, be regaled by the dance, music and stories of Mayan and Aztec empires, and delve into the mysteries of Argentina through the magic of tango. Complements the following exhibitions: Photography in Argentina, 1850–2010: Contradiction and Continuity; The Metropolis in Latin America, 1830–1930; Making Art Concrete: Works from Argentina and Brazil in the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros; and Golden Kingdoms: Luxury and Legacy in the Ancient Americas.


Xipe Totec Danzantes Aztecas
11:00–11:45 a.m. & 3:15–4:00 p.m.

Come and join this Aztec dance group from Mexico City as they perform and teach these beautiful dances from antiquity. Learn the traditional "friendship dance," expose yourself to classical Aztec dress and jewelry, and hear the ancient stories that have inspired this culture for thousands of years.

Xipe Totec brings the splendor of indigenous Mexico to life through their Aztec ritual danzas. With the blessings and recognition of Mexican elders, this group preserves and passes down ancient Aztec culture through storytelling, traditional dress, and danzas that predate the Spanish conquest of Mexico. Xipe Totec has performed throughout North America, and its leader, Lazaro Arvizu, has been teaching and performing Aztec Dance for over 40 years.

Carlos Barrionuevo & Mayte Valdes
12:30–1:15 p.m. & 4:30–5:15 p.m.

Watch these world-renowned dancers and experience the art of tango. Carlos and Mayte teach audience members "social tango," an informal, improvisational form of tango practiced in milongas, or traditional Argentinean dance circles.

Carlos Barrionueves and Mayte Valdes are two of the world's premiere tango dancers. They have taught and performed this traditional Argentinean art for audiences across the world, dancing from Sweden to Egypt. Carlos and Mayte have also starred in award-winning documentaries, films, and television shows about tango, as part of their mission to spread this art to the rest of the world.

Viver Brasil - Cooking Samba
1:45 p.m. Procession from the Arrival Plaza to the Courtyard
2:00–2:45 p.m. Performance on the Courtyard Stage

Experience the richness of Brazilian culture from the region of Bahia. Watch royal orixa dances, riveting capoeira, and joyful samba, join a carnival with live music, and take a spirited dance workshop.

Viver Brasil takes audiences on a cultural journey to Salvador, Bahia, one of Brazil's most vibrant cities. Through electrifying Afro-Brazilian dance and music, audiences can experience the joyful color, thrilling rhythms, and communal celebration that characterize the culture of this historic city. The company, celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, has been raising awareness of this culture through dialogue with the artists, choreographers, and musicians of Bahia, creating live performances that address issues of art, humanity, memory, and race.


Creation Myths and Folk tales from Latin America with Olga Loya
Noon–12:45 p.m. and 3:00–3:45 p.m.

Listen to the beating sounds of drums and hear Aztec myths about the creation of the world, which entail the sun and moon, death and life, music and food. Then listen to the Mayan creation story, as well as folk tales from Latin America. Children and adults alike can participate, playing the part of the "hungry goddess," and help the gods bring the sun and moon to the world.

10:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m. with last seating at 5:30 p.m.

Make an Arpillera de America Latina with Marianne Sadowski
Join in the creation of a large communal arpillera* representing the map of Latin America. Participants will use fabric and yarn to collage their silhouettes onto this map.

*An arpillera is a colorful form of patchwork quilt using everyday materials. It was popularized by Chilean women living under the military dictatorship of Auguste Pinochet as a way to generate income while also protesting injustice. Over the years, and since the end of Pinochet's reign (1990), these beautiful quilts have grown less political, becoming more representative of Latin American culture in general.

Luxurious Legacies with Marcus Kuiland Nazario
Create a luxurious breast plate, necklace, earrings, or diadem (crown) based on works from the exhibition, Golden Kingdoms: Luxury and Legacy in the Ancient Americas, using beads, string, vinyl, and other fun materials.

Geometric Pins
Artists in mid-century Argentina and Brazil experimented with geometric abstraction, often using unusual, synthetic materials. They hoped these innovative forms would have an increased role in everyday life.

Guests can bring geometric abstraction into their everyday lives by creating a wearable pin using synthetic shrinking paper.


Mesoamerican Cultural Demonstration with Lazaro Arvisu Jr.
Explore the material culture of the Mexica, an indigenous people from central Mexico, who were once the rulers of the majestic Aztec Empire. Join Lazaro Arvisu Jr., an expert of ancient Aztec culture, as he demonstrates their use of tools and clothing, and discusses trade and the creation of these objects in pre-Columbian times.

The Family Festival is produced for the J. Paul Getty Museum by Community Arts Resources.

This event is part of Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, a far reaching and ambitious exploration of Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles, taking place from September 2017 through January 2018 at more than 70 cultural institutions across Southern California. Pacific Standard Time is an initiative of the Getty. The presenting sponsor is Bank of America.

Back to Top

Most recently in the series

Family Festival Celebrating Eyewitness Views: Making History in Eighteenth-Century Europe and The Lure of Italy: Artists' Views
June 3, 2017
Enjoy a day of celebration and discovery for the whole family inspired by magnificent historical scenes on view in the exhibition Eyewitness Views: Making History in Eighteenth-Century Europe, featuring music and dance performances, storytelling, and art-making workshops.

Family Festival Celebrating The Alchemy of Color in Medieval Manuscripts
November 12, 2016
Dive into the wonderful world of color in this daylong family festival. Immerse yourself in red, blue and gold through multi-dimensional workshops and demonstrations. Experience the rainbow as our DJs spin colorful tunes, enjoy evocative theater featuring life-sized puppets, conduct science experiments, and pick up a commemorative mini coloring book. This Getty-wide event takes you "under-color" for a day of learning and fun! Complements the exhibitions The Art of Alchemy, The Alchemy of Color in Medieval Manuscripts, and The Shimmer of Gold: Giovanni di Paolo in Renaissance Siena.

Family Festival Celebrating Cave Temples of Dunhuang: Buddhist Art on China's Silk Road and Traversing the Globe through Illuminated Manuscripts
June 11, 2016
Navigate the myriad cultures of the Silk Road and beyond in this family festival inspired by the exhibitions Cave Temples of Dunhuang: Buddhist Art on China's Silk Road and Traversing the Globe Through Illuminated Manuscripts. With hands-on workshops and interactive events, you can make your own book, write a couple of Chinese characters, witness the beauty of calligraphy from the Middle Kingdom, be entranced by stories of Buddha in animal forms, and feel the world's interconnectedness through music and dance from China to Peru.

Family Festival Celebrating In Focus: Play
March 28, 2015
We're turning the Getty Center into a gigantic playground for this daylong festival celebrating the simple act of play in all of its forms. From hula hoops to dance workshops, and from chess masters to checkers, there's something for everyone in this fun-filled day. Storytelling and music mix with circus acts, board games, pick-up sticks, and the Getty's first ping-pong party. Get your game face on!

Family Festival Celebrating Chivalry in the Middle Ages
September 20, 2014
Travel with your imagination to the age of chivalry in this daylong festival celebrating knights in armor, ladies of the court and all things noble, inspired by the exhibition Chivalry in the Middle Ages. Listen to tales of Arthur's Round Table and deeds of great bravery through age-old stories and myths. Watch as a master blacksmith demonstrates how to forge a suit of armor, design a family coat of arms, and decorate a goblet for your own royal feast.

Family Festival Celebrating A Royal Passion: Queen Victoria and Photography
April 12, 2014
Hear ye! Hear ye! Her royal majesty Queen Victoria invites young and old alike to journey to her 19th-century realm via the magical world of photography and the excitement of a family festival. Visitors can enjoy the majestic bagpipe sounds of the Queen's beloved Scotland, sing along to boisterous English music hall tunes, revel in the topsy-turvy world of Gilbert and Sullivan operas, and have pictures taken to create a personal "carte de visite." Girls and boys can even make their own royal crown at a hands-on workshop. Kids of all ages can remember the day for the rest of his or her reign with a photo album of this royal visit to the Getty Center.

Family Festival Celebrating Canterbury and St. Albans: Treasures from Church and Cloister
October 19, 2013
Make the pilgrimage to Canterbury at this day-long immersive festival and be transported back to the medieval world. Experience the music and dance of Chaucer's time with LA-based Capella-Cordina, Brigid's Daughters and Ciaramella. Discover the richness of the Canterbury Tales through acclaimed performers We Tell Stories and David Prather, and create your own 21st-century version of a stained-glass window at one of the hands-on workshops.

Family Festival Celebrating Gardens of the Renaissance
June 8, 2013
Celebrate the Gardens of the Renaissance in this free daylong family festival. Create a garden of your very own or fashion a floral wreath at one the interactive workshops. Delight in the sounds of madrigals from the 15th and 16th centuries or listen to tales of distant kingdoms with renowned storytellers.

Family Festival Celebrating Looking East: Rubens's Encounter with Asia
April 13, 2013
Experience Korean culture in this family festival inspired by the exhibition Looking East: Rubens's Encounter with Asia. Master choreographers Kim Eung Hwa, Kwan Gyu Lim, and Don Kim present their world-class dance companies. Make your own charm, propeller, or Korean headdress at interactive workshops led by the Paper Culture Foundation.

Family Festival Celebrating Herb Ritts: L.A. Style and Portraits of Renown: Photography and the Cult of Celebrity
June 9, 2012
Delve into the world of celebrity, image, photography, and Los Angeles at this free daylong family festival inspired by the exhibitions Herb Ritts: L.A. Style and Portraits of Renown: Photography and the Cult of Celebrity. Participants designed a magazine cover with a photo of themself as the featured celebrity, learned how to vogue like Madonna, and danced to the sounds of Los Angeles at the close of the 20th century.

Pacific Standard Time Family Festival
October 22, 2011
Inspired by art in L.A., this daylong festival invited a new generation of local artists to reinterpret the creative legacy of artists featured in the Pacific Standard Time initiative. Guests discovered special performances and unexpected installations by Machine Project, Kim Ye, and other local artists, made their own mail art, helped to recreate a version of Di Suvero's Peace Tower with Becca Lofchie, and so much more at this only-in-Los Angeles event! This event was part of Pacific Standard Time at the Getty Center.

Family Festival Celebrating Gods of Angkor: Bronzes from the National Museum of Cambodia
June 4, 2011
Visitors experienced the beauty and wonder of Cambodia in this daylong celebration complementing the exhibition Gods of Angkor: Bronzes from the National Museum of Cambodia. This festival featured traditional Cambodian music and dance performances, hands-on workshops, storytelling with Sheetal Gandhi, and a fashion show featuring traditional Cambodian clothing.

Family Festival Celebrating Photography from the New China and Felice Beato: A Photographer on the Eastern Road
March 19, 2011
Visitors discovered the richness and beauty of the ancient empires of India, Japan, and China as well as recent explosions in artistic creativity. This festival featured traditional Chinese opera, Chinese folktales told by a master storyteller, and the amazing music and dance of these vibrant cultures. Inspired by Felice Beato: A Photographer on the Eastern Road and Photography from the New China.

Family Festival Celebrating Leonardo da Vinci and the Art of Sculpture: Inspiration and Innovation
June 5, 2010
Visitors entered the world of Leonardo da Vinci and Italian culture in this daylong celebration with music, theater, storytelling, and interactive workshops. Featured were the tale of Pinocchio as performed by Will & Company, the timeless magic of commedia dell'arte in The World on the Moon directed by Orlando Pabotoy, folk music by Musicàntica, story teller Carl Weintraub as Leonardo da Vinci, and art-making workshops including making a sketchbook inspired by Leonardo's drawings, creating a maquette of an equestrian monument, making a frame and designing a postcard. Inspired by the exhibition Leonardo da Vinci and the Art of Sculpture: Inspiration and Invention.

Family Festival Celebrating French Art and Culture
September 12, 2009
Vive la France! Visitors enjoyed a day in the Gallic countryside with this Family Festival, which featured the chanteuse Jessica Fichot as well as the cosmopolitan sounds of Jean-Paul Monsché. The event also featured folktales and the giant fantastic creatures by Dragon Knights. Inspired by two exhibitions: Capturing Nature's Beauty: Three Centuries of French Landscapes and Cast in Bronze: French Sculpture from Renaissance to Revolution.

How to Get Here
The Getty Center is located at 1200 Getty Center Drive in Los Angeles, California, approximately 12 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles. See Hours, Directions, Parking for maps and driving directions.