Institute News

Skirball Cultural Center Debuts New Testimony Exhibit

Visitors to the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles can now explore testimony from the USC Shoah Foundation within the museum’s core exhibition, Visions and Values: Jewish Life from Antiquity to America.

Visions and Values features changing displays of works from Skirball’s extensive Judaica collection that tell the 4,000-year-old story of the Jewish people. Galleries explore themes including Beginnings, Journeys, Holidays, Lifecycle, Synagogue, Passage to America, Nation of Immigrants, The Holocaust, Israel, and Personal Journeys.

“The testimonies from Holocaust survivors gathered and preserved by the Shoah Foundation are irreplaceable historical documents. The survivors speak with credibility and authority no one else can match,” said Skirball museum director Robert Kirschner. “In Visions and Values, our core exhibition devoted to the history of the Jews from antiquity to America, we have chosen a chapter of the story not often highlighted:  the survivors' first glimpse, after the catastrophe, of new hopes and new lives in the U.S. and in Israel. The new exhibit offers our visitors both a historical overview and six compelling personal perspectives.” 

Visitors watch clips of Leo Abrami, Moshe Avital, Magda Herzberger, Marion Achtentuch, Zora Goldberger and Jack Adler’s testimonies in the gallery and can also access nearly 1,000 other full testimonies on a kiosk.

“The Skirball has long admired the work of the Shoah Foundation, not only for recording and preserving survivor testimony from the Holocaust, but for seeking to expose and document any attempt at genocide in any part of the world.  In its dedication to human rights and human dignity, the Shoah Foundation has a willing partner in the Skirball,” Kirschner said.

In addition to its museum galleries, the Skirball Cultural Center hosts music, film, theater, literary and family programs. Other current exhibitions are To the Point: Posters by Dan Reisinger and the interactive children’s exhibit Noah’s Ark at the Skirball. Each year, it receives over 600,000 visitors and 80,000 students participate in its school program.