The Eldridge Street Synagogue on the Lower East Side of Manhattan received a new stained-glass window co-designed by artist Kiki Smith and architect Deborah Gans in 2010. The circular window called STAR OF DAVID—which consists of 1,200 plates of glass, is 16 feet in diameter, and weighs more than 6,000 pounds—has a Star of David at its center and 600 smaller stars swirling around it. Installed in December 2010, it is meant to symbolize and represent the Jewish faith and the Lower East Side’s immigrant population that founded the synagogue in 1887. New engineering processes in stained glass allowed Star of David to appear lighter and more transparent than traditional leaded stained glass.
Star of David is Smith’s first stained glass installation for an architectural space, though she has worked extensively with glass before. She hopes the glass window contributes to the ethos of calm reflection at the synagogue.