Where to Begin?
New Mapel Orientation Gallery is an inviting first stop for visitors
There’s so much to see at The Huntington that visitors often don’t know where to begin. As of this spring, there’s a perfect place to start: the new Mapel Orientation Gallery, a gift of Mona and Frank Mapel.
Located at the south end of the new Steven S. Koblik Education and Visitor Center, the Mapel Orientation Gallery features engaging multimedia displays that provide visitors with a welcoming introduction to The Huntington. The space is the brainchild of Karina White, senior gallery designer at The Huntington, whose previous projects have included the Library’s permanent exhibition, “Remarkable Works, Remarkable Times,” among others.
The Huntington: A History in 10 Minutes
One of the must-sees in the new gallery is a delightfully visual 10-minute film that will appeal to newcomers and frequent visitors alike. Produced by L.A. filmmaker Cosmo Segurson, it's a treasure trove of images and information about Henry and Arabella Huntington and the institution they founded.
In another part of the gallery, then-and-now maps and photographs reveal how the Huntington estate looked in the early 1900s, when much of the property was covered with orchards and agricultural crops. At the “scent bar,” pick up a wooden bowl and inhale the fragrances of wild sage, roses, and orange blossoms, evoking the scents that filled the air a century ago.
Need help deciding what to see and do during your visit? Pick up a “quirky tour.” Whatever your mood or interests, there’s an itinerary tailor-made for you, from the “I Need to Chill Out” tour to the “I Love the Macabre” tour. They may lead you in very unexpected directions.
Before you leave the gallery, take a minute to browse through a wall of recommendations left by other visitors. Feel free to jot down suggestions of your own. You’ll also find a rotating selection of visitors’ Instagram photos, curated by Huntington staff. If you snap your own photos in the gardens or galleries, be sure to tag them on Instagram with #AtTheH for a chance to be featured on this wall and inspire future visitors.
Through Artists’ Lenses
We asked three Los Angeles–area artists to make short, silent films for the walls of the entryway of the Mapel Orientation Gallery. Each film is a poetic visual exploration of objects from our collections and spaces you can venture to during your visit.
“Micrographia” by Charlotte Pryce
“Twelve Bagatelles for Janis Crystal Lipzin” by Rick Bahto
"From Bees to Moons.” by Steve Roden