Kiki Smith’s Stellar Stained Glass Unveiled at Museum at Eldridge Street

10/13/2010 10:31 AM |

Stained glass window at the Museum at Eldridge Street by Kiki Smith and Deborah Gans

On Sunday the Museum at Eldridge Street, housed in one of the oldest synagogues in the country at 12 Eldridge Street, unveiled a spectacular new stained glass window (pictured) created for its facade by the artist Kiki Smith and architect Deborah Gans. The starry, swirling blue and gold design is the long-awaited centerpiece of the Museum’s 24-years-long restoration.

Stained glass window at the Museum at Eldridge Street by Kiki Smith and Deborah Gans

Organized around a central Star of David, the glass forms swirl outward with some 12,000 individual clear blue panes marked with 5-pointed gold stars. The previous window, a set of rudimentary glass blocks dating back to 1944, had been installed as a cost-effective solution when the previous stained glass was damaged. The new window, 16 feet in diameter, stands above the equally spectacular pulpit in the 123-years-old building, and as the scaffolding comes down from the building’s facade Smith and Gans’ will prove an equally superb addition to the frenetic Chinatown streetscape outside.

Stained glass window at the Museum at Eldridge Street by Kiki Smith and Deborah Gans

(LindsayPollock, photos courtesy of Museum at Eldridge Street, Kate Milford)