Trendy Man: "Your wife was just showing us her Klimt." Rodney Dangerfield: "You too, huh? She's shown it to everybody!" While the opening of the Gustav Klimt "The Magic of Line" exhibition might not quite be the right place for hilarity, reading this preview is the perfect time to get that giggle out of your system. Now you're ready for this retrospective, the first fully dedicated to the drawings of Austrian artist Gustav Klimt (1862-1918), one of the seminal figures in modern art. Klimt's evolution is represented with drawings that operate rather like his paintings' X-rays. These black chalk-and-pencil drawings are a stark contrast to his sumptuous, lavish images of noblewomen draped in a velvet armor of gold and gemstones. In 1897, Klimt led a group of artists to break from the conservative KŸnstlerhaus to form the Vienna Secession, the motto of which was "To each age its art, to each art its freedom." It was a movement that meant to reflect modern life -- fairly ironic, given that Klimt's art is the dream and modern life is often not nearly so dreamy. Getty Center, 1200 Getty Center Drive; Tues.-Sun.; through Sept. 23; free, parking $15 per car. (310) 440-7300, getty.edu.
Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: July 3. Continues through Sept. 23, 2012