FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 27, 2018

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Skirball Cultural Center announces highlights of new traveling exhibition

The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg  
October 19, 2018–March 10, 2019

LOS ANGELES, CA—The Skirball Cultural Center has unveiled details about Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg—the first-ever retrospective about the trailblazing associate justice, based on the popular Tumblr and bestselling book of the same name. Marking twenty-five years since her appointment to the Supreme Court bench, the exhibition takes an entertaining yet rigorous look at RBG’s life and work—in particular the efforts she joined to protect civil rights and expand equal opportunity for all Americans. Notorious RBG will debut at the Skirball October 19, 2018–March 10, 2019, then travel to several US cities through 2022.

“With so much at stake on the Supreme Court, we encourage visitors to explore the American judicial system through the lens of one of its sharpest legal minds,” remarked Skirball curator Cate Thurston, who developed the exhibition in partnership with the book’s authors, Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik. “We hope that by bringing to life the Justice’s compelling biography and her commitment to our nation’s highest ideals, the exhibition will inspire everyone to participate in civic life and consider how the future of the judiciary impacts us all.”

Featuring archival photographs and documents, historical artifacts, contemporary art, media stations, and gallery interactives, the exhibition spans RBG’s varied roles as student, life partner, mother, lawyer, judge, women’s rights pioneer, and Internet phenomenon. Exhibition highlights include:

  • A robe and jabot from RBG’s Supreme Court wardrobe.
  • Home videos of RBG with her husband, Martin “Marty” Ginsburg, on their honeymoon as well as in the early years of their marriage.
  • Yearbooks from across RBG’s academic life, from her Brooklyn high school to Cornell, Columbia, Harvard, and Rutgers Universities—plus a chance to read a paper that she wrote as an eighth grader exploring the relationship between the Ten Commandments, the Magna Carta, the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and the recently formed United Nations Charter.
  • The official portraits of RBG and Sandra Day O’Connor, the first two women to serve on the Supreme Court, on loan from the National Portrait Gallery.
  • Ten listening stations where visitors can hear RBG’s delivery of oral arguments, majority opinions, and forceful dissents in landmark Supreme Court cases such as:
    • US v. Virginia (regarding male-only admissions of the Virginia Military Institute)
    • Bush v. Gore (regarding the 2000 US Presidential election)
    • Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company (regarding pay discrimination)
    • Shelby County v. Holder (regarding voting rights)
  • A new interview with Stephen Wiesenfeld, whom RBG has called her favorite client. In 1975, Wiesenfeld filed a lawsuit when he was denied his late wife’s Social Security benefits because only widows, not widowers, were eligible to receive them. As head of the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project, RBG successfully argued the case before the Supreme Court, which concurred that the gender-based distinction violated Wiesenfeld’s right to equal protection under the law.
  • Correspondence with civil rights leader, poet, and lawyer Pauli Murray, whose groundbreaking idea to use the Fourteenth Amendment to litigate civil rights and sex discrimination cases informed RBG’s winning strategy as an attorney for the ACLU.
  • 3D reimaginations of key places in RBG’s life, such as:
    • Her childhood Brooklyn apartment, where visitors can flip through the Nancy Drew books Ruth Bader loved as a girl, among other items, and get a feel for her Jewish upbringing
    • The kitchen in RBG and Marty’s home, featuring some of Marty’s favorite recipes and cooking utensils
    • The Supreme Court bench, where visitors can dress up in a robe and jabot and imagine making their own opinions heard
    • The desk in her chambers, where visitors can view the 2018–2019 Supreme Court calendar and grasp what sorts of cases will be decided by the justices in the near term
  • The costume worn by RBG, a longtime opera fan, when she made a cameo appearance in Donizetti’s The Daughter of the Regiment at the Kennedy Center.
  • RBG-inspired art by artists such as Maira Kalman, Roxana Alfer Geffen, and Ari Richter, as well as a costume designed by Isis Mussenden and worn by Felicity Jones in the forthcoming feature film On the Basis of Sex, based on the true story of a young RBG

Following its debut at the Skirball, Notorious RBG will go on a national tour over the next four years. Venues and dates will be announced in mid-October 2018.


The exhibition Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and its related educational programs at the Skirball Cultural Center are made possible through lead support from the following donor:

Lynda and Stewart Resnick – The Wonderful Company

Along with support from the following donors:

Angell Foundation
Barbara Timmer and Catherine Benkaim
Stephanie and Harold Bronson
Marcy Carsey
Engaging the Senses Foundation
Rebekah and Howard Farber
The David Geffen Foundation
Glaser Weil Fink Howard Avchen & Shapiro LLP
Colleen and Bob Haas
Elise K. Haas
Hillside Memorial Park and Mortuary
Karsh Family Foundation
Suzanne and Ric Kayne
Kingsley & Kingsley
Richard and Ruth Lavine Family Foundation
Patricia L. Glaser and Sam Mudie
Ruth Roberts
Debbie and James Schreier
Skirball Cultural Center Volunteer Service Council
U.S. Bank
Visionary Women
Julie and Peter Weil
Susan Hirsch Wohl and Alan Wohl
Women for Justice and [t]Ruth

Additional support was provided by the following donors:

Phyllis K. Friedman
Good Works Foundation
Eileen Harris Norton Foundation
Morris A. Hazen Family Foundation
Sauvage Family
Stolaroff Foundation

About the Skirball

The Skirball Cultural Center is a place of meeting guided by the Jewish tradition of welcoming the stranger and inspired by the American democratic ideals of freedom and equality. We welcome people of all communities and generations to participate in cultural experiences that celebrate discovery and hope, foster human connections, and call upon us to help build a more just society.

Visiting the Skirball

The Skirball Cultural Center is located at 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90049. Museum hours: Tuesday–Friday 12:00–5:00 pm; Saturday–Sunday 10:00 am–5:00 pm; closed Mondays and holidays. Admission to exhibitions: $12 General; $9 Seniors, Full-Time Students, and Children over 12; $7 Children 2–12. Exhibitions are always free to Skirball Members and Children under 2. Exhibitions are free to all visitors on Thursdays. For general information, the public may call (310) 440-4500 or visit The Skirball is also home to Zeidler’s Café, which serves innovative California cuisine in an elegant setting, and Audrey’s Museum Store, which sells books, contemporary art, music, jewelry, and more.