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Art displayed in Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's Watergate home up for auction

Items include works by Picasso and highlight her love of the opera and Southwestern U.S.

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — A rare opportunity exists to purchase a piece of art history that was once owned by an icon of American history.

More than 150 items owned and displayed by the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in her Watergate home and SCOTUS chambers will be auctioned off on April 27 and 28. 

"The Kennedy Center, the Washington National Opera and the family selected us to sell the over 150 objects that have been donated from her estate to raise money for the Kennedy Center," said Elizabeth Haynie-Wainstein, owner of the Potomack Company auction house in Alexandria, Virginia. 

Among the items are a mink coat RBG would wear when attending the opera. Her name is discretely stitched in the coat pocket. There's also a glass vase commemorating her presence at the inauguration of President Barack Obama.  

"All of these proceeds will go to the Washington National Opera which was her great passion," said Haynie-Wainstein. "She was famous for going with Justice Scalia. The two of them would attend the opera together. Put aside their judicial and political differences and go and enjoy." 

"A lot of pieces are from her home and her chambers that are personal pieces that reflect her life," said Haynie-Wainstein.

Many of the items include gifts to Bader-Ginsburg from speaking engagements like a tiger statue from the LSU law school. 

"Whenever you walk into someone's home it's revealing of their life and their passions and their esthetic interests," said Haynie-Wainstein. "One thing we noticed is she had a lot of Native American pieces and so as we began to research and think about it, it all made sense because she loved the opera and loved spending her summers in Santa Fe (New Mexico) where they have an outdoor opera."   

The two auctions will take place over two days. The first is RBG's collection of modern art and the second will include a collection of items donated from her home and chambers. 

The Potomack Company is loosely estimating the auctions could raise $50,000 to $80,000 or perhaps even more. The items begin at $50 and some, like the Picasso pieces, are valued at over $10,000.

To see the items up for auction and information on bidding click HERE.

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