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The Getty's new blog has big potential

April 9, 2010 | 10:40 am
Santiago staircase According to the Getty Trust's new online blog, The Iris, which launched on Monday, few museums in Chile were seriously damaged by the devastating magnitude-8.8 earthquake that rocked the country in February.

"Only the O’Higgins Museum in Talca and the National Museum of Natural History in Santiago were damaged structurally," said a post, which includes a decidedly horrifying photograph of a crumpled gallery inside the O'Higgins. (The photograph here shows a stairway on one side of Santiago's Fine Arts Museum, damaged by a fallen cornice.) Apparently the Chilean Museum of Precolumbian Art in Santiago suffered only minor problems.

What's notable about the post, which represents the possibilities for a venture that is a bit late to the burgeoning realm of art museum blogs, is its source. The report comes from Lina Nagel, a Santiago-based translator working for a far-flung Getty project that catalogs art information internationally.

The Getty's reach is vast. That makes the potential for the new blog to be an insightful source of art news similarly substantial.

--Christopher Knight

Photo: Santiago's Fine Arts Museum on April 1. Credit: Roberto Candia / Associated Press

Follow Times art critic Christopher Knight at KnightLAT on Twitter.