Museums , Etc , I Have Worked On - 2
No Charge
Los Angeles County Natural History Museum
Closed for 3 years due to structural and visable
damage, I raised the needed money and hired
the company fix the damage.
While that work was being done I found a
tenant for the north end of the building south of
the main building- for a technical product
history museum.
Two friends of mine, Jesse Owens and Jackie
Robinson introduced me to the now-founders
of the museum for the black people part at the
southern end of the southern building. I helped
them alot by showing them how to display their
material and choosing display cases- very good
people.
When the main building was ready I personally
set up the exhibits in the first room on the left,
which was exactly the same 51 years later.
Some County of Los Angeles liar has put a
female's name on the room, on a small sign
next to the entrance. The renovation of
2010-2011 is in the style that I had used in the
Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History 52
years before. When I reopened the Los Angeles
County Natural History Museum 50 years ago
they talked of redoing in the style they did on
2010-2011- why 50 years later?! Much more
family friendly now!
The butterfly
exhibit was built
exactly to plans I
gave them in 1959
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Los Angeles County Museum Of Art
While he still owned the parcel of land that now contains the Paige Museum(I
did most of the physical work) and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, I
asked my friend George Allan Hancock for the now art museum site to build
an art museum , if I could- he said yes. Next, in a private session, I asked the
then Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors if they would accept an art
museum on that site if I gave it to them- they voted yes. I raised the money,
chose an architect and fed him what to draw and put on the specifications
list- two phases, one to be built immediately and a second for the future
whenever the Board of Supervisors would choose. The lead architect and
myself chose the general contractor for the construction, with myself
choosing many of the colors and marble types along the way. When that was
done I did the outside landscaping. I put the light pole part together but the
idea came anonymously.
Choosing the initial exhibits was rather easy and inexpensive- as Kissing
Bobby many were happy to just speak to me. Much money was made
available for daily operations. Also pledges. I chose to "hide behind" the
architect and general contractor to avoid the death threats I had received
doing the Civic Center between the Hahn Building and the Courthouse in
downtown Los Angeles at age 9( 3 persons were sent to state prisons and 2
put on probation, which left at least 16 left not wanting a kid showing them
who was better(they thought).
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Norton-Simon
Norton-Simon Museum was a mess from being closed for
years. The paint was peeling inside and out, with much graffiti.
Good that it was on the plain side because that meant less to
be repaired.
Plain also meant easy to put marble on some walls and some
glass doors and fancy stuff. I did the landscaping outside plus
some of the parking lot construction. Money raised by me and
paid by a board of trustees.As always, no charge by me and I
did this while the Los Angeles County Museum Of Art was
being built.
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Getty Villa & The Getty Museum
J.Paul Getty asked me to do the plant work at
the Getty Villa and at The Getty museum(I did)
BUT! he sure did have alot for me to do when I
got to each place. This here or this there? This
vase or that picture or what(I had already been
in the stocking of the Los Angeles Museum of
Art and the Norton-Simon and the Santa
Barbara Museum Of Art). Somebody had been
talking to J.Paul- maybe my friend George Allan
Hancock who had said to me that J.Paul had
started the Getty museum using me as
inspiration because I had started and built the
Los Angeles Museum of Art. My friend Pablo
Picasso had watched me at those other
museums but I doubt that he would have said
anything.
Why is not important- important is that J.Paul
had forgotten many basics in both places.
Restrooms, office space, storage space for
extra exhibits and parking! At the Getty, to save
the long walk up from parking across the street
I added the parking structure and the tram. Easy
for J.Paul and I to go up and down the hill 10
times a day but some could not do one! A side
interest of J.Paul in new cameras and
photographic stuff got me to design the
research place in back. At The Getty and the
Getty Villa I chose much of the marble when the
original choices started to arrive cracked. He
liked my choices and knowledge of glass doors
and panels for better and more light. Some
whole walls were replaced with glass. The
WORLD FAMOUS architect just smiled when I
got one my ideas and drew what I said. No
death threats like from many of the Los
Angeles-area architects who thought I,a 9 year
old kid, was a threat to them when I designed
the Civic Center Park between the Hahn
Building and the Courthouse.
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Descanso , The Huntington , Arboretum
One day, two Nature Conservancy
bullies stopped at the Arboretum and
then at The Huntington and then at
Descanso Gardens, each place scaring
away the gardeners with beatings and
giving them threats of death if they ever
came back, one bully being Richard
Pough, founder of the Nature
Conservancy. The next day two Nature
Conservancy attorneys went to each
place with contracts for the female
bosses of the place stating that they
would pay the Nature Conservancy
$100,000 a year for operating a nature
conservancy on the property. But, the
ladies were not going to pay anything;
so, they beat the attorneys away with
brooms.
The following two years showed the
plants wasting away. That is when I
was called in. With all the vegatation
removed, I built the three places back
up, instructing county employees on
doing the work at the Arboretum and
doing all the work at The Huntington
and Decanso Gardens. Much great syle-
not the little stuff of before. Now people
actually pay to go in those places. They
are beautiful.
To Museums------

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MONTEREY BAY AQUARIUM
After being closed for many years, the buildings were falling apart and
the pipes rusted through and the insulation for the electric lines rotten.
Going building by building I had every floor and wall and roof and pipe
and electric line replaced. A great job was done to imitate the old style of
the wood work. New tanks were put in and a great diversity of sea life put
in- I had learned much during my time at Marineland Of The Pacific.
Naturally no charge by me and the work of the others paid by two
wealthy Monterey residents.