Friday, February 19, 2016

Skirball Cultural Center - CHASING DREAMS: Baseball and Becoming American Exhibit

Mark your calendar because when this opens up you should attend. 

(Greenberg's Military ID)
The Skirball Cultural Center, located on Sepulveda, has just announced a brand new exhibit just in time for Baseball's Opening Day.  Starting on April 7th and ending on October 30th -- just about the entire Baseball season -- they will celebrate the game by examining the sport as a unifying force in American life.  Minority groups of all stripes have not only excelled at our National Game but have also used it as a way to immerse themselves into American life.  Per a press release:
(1947 Ebbets Field, Opening Day)
Chasing Dreams is the first large-scale exhibition to illustrate 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.

“Chasing Dreams weaves together baseball history with stories of immigration and integration into American life,” explains Robert Kirschner, Skirball Museum Director. "It illustrates what it is about the game that has resonated so deeply with diverse immigrants and minorities since the nineteenth century—whether on the field or in the stands—helping them to navigate American culture, connect to the nation’s collective values and traditions, and feel at home in American society. We hope that it will deepen our visitors’ appreciation of the role that baseball has played in furthering equality and social justice.”
Go here for information.  On display will be over 130 artifacts; including uniforms, film footage, trophies, memorabilia and Baseball cards.  BTW, there will be a bunch of Dodgers related stuff to enjoy.
For its presentation at the Skirball, the exhibition will be augmented by an array of rare Dodger memorabilia. Erin Clancey, Skirball Chief Curator, explains, “In addition to the Koufax items that will come from the original exhibition, it was important that we add even more treasured objects relating to our hometown heroes, such as the warm-up jacket of Dodger Fernando Valenzuela, the Mexican American pitcher who became a transnational sensation when he threw a 2-0 shutout against the Houston Astros on opening day 1981. His unique pitching style and charisma made him an instant celebrity.”
There will also be an companion exhibit featuring the artwork of Ben Sakoguchi; "The Unauthorized History of Baseball in 100-Odd Paintings."

In the photo on the above left is an Ewer presented to Barney Dreyfuss in celebration of his twenty-fifth anniversary as owner of the Pittsburgh Pirates, 1924.  On the above right is the last home plate used at the NY Giants home stadium, the Polo Grounds.  On the left below is a photo of Hank Greenberg and Jose DiMaggio.  On the below right is a Joe DiMaggio game-used uniform.

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* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

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