The Skirball Cultural Center, one of the world’s most dynamic Jewish cultural institutions and among the leading cultural venues in Los Angeles, announced on Thursday that artifacts from the O’Malley family collection will be on display from April 7-October 30, 2016. It is called the “Chasing Dreams: Baseball & Becoming American” exhibit.
On loan from Peter O’Malley, the former president of the Los Angeles Dodgers from 1970-1998, will be the original Dodger Stadium model, made by renowned Hollywood producer-director Mervyn LeRoy from design plans and given as a gift to Peter’s father, Walter, in 1960.
It was originally exhibited in the winter of 1961-62, prior to the April 10, 1962 opening of Dodger Stadium, when it was on display at the downtown Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce and Bank of America headquarters building. The model shows the same pastel color palette as when Dodger Stadium opened and was in Walter O’Malley’s office until 1979.
In addition to the stadium, autographed baseballs from each of Sandy Kofax’s no-hitters, which were presented to Walter O’Malley and his wife, Kay, One of those no-hitters was a perfect game against the Cubs on September 9, 1965.
“Chasing Dreams” illustrates America’s national pastime as a “pathway for American Jews and other immigrant and minority communities – including Italians, Asians, Latinos, and African Americans – to become American.” The show was organized and traveled from the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia, Pa., and the Skirball has added a local exhibit, including more Dodger memorabilia – jerseys from Chan Ho Park and Hideo Nomo, as well as the warm-up jacket of Fernando Valenzuela and Jackie Robinson’s 1947 Rookie of the Year plaque.
The Skirball Cultural Center is the latest museum to showcase the O’Malley collection dating back to 2002. Artifacts have been previous displayed at three Presidential Libraries and Museums (including Ronald Reagan, Richard Nixon and George W. Bush), as well as the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y., and the Japan Baseball Hall of Fame in Tokyo.
Also running at Skirball from April 7–September 4 is “The Unauthorized History of Baseball in 100-Odd Paintings: The Art of Ben Sakoguchi,” reflects both the highs and lows of American culture.
ABOUT SKIRBALL CULTURAL CENTER
In addition to one of the world’s most dynamic Jewish cultural institutions and among the leading cultural venues in Los Angeles, Its mission is to explore the connections between 4,000 years of Jewish heritage and the vitality of American democratic ideals. It seeks to welcome and inspire people of every ethnic and cultural identity in American life. Guided by our respective memories and experiences, together we aim to build a society in which all of us can feel at home.
The Skirball Cultural Center achieves its mission through educational programs that explore the literary, visual, and performing arts from around the world; through the display and interpretation of its permanent collections and changing exhibitions; through an interactive family destination inspired by the Noah’s Ark story; and through outreach to the community. More than 600,000 people visit the Skirball each year, including 80,000 children and teachers from public, private, and parochial schools.
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