David Hartt: The Histories (Le Mancenillier)

Beth Sholom Synagogue Preservation Foundation



Beth Sholom Synagogue exterior, Elkins Park, PA. Photo by Lazlo Regos, courtesy of Beth Sholom Synagogue Preservation Foundation.


Beth Sholom Synagogue interior from the rear of the Sanctuary. Photo by Helene Mansheim.


Beth Sholom Synagogue interior. Photo courtesy of Beth Sholom Synagogue Preservation Foundation.

A newly commissioned, site-responsive, multimedia installation by visual artist David Hartt will activate Beth Sholom Synagogue, a Frank Lloyd Wright-designed National Historic Landmark in Elkins Park, PA. Comprising video, sculpture, music, performance, and other elements, the project will offer unexpected ways to experience and interpret an active space of faith, and prompt meaningful dialogue between congregants and the new visitors who will discover the historic site for the first time. A resident of Elkins Park, Hartt often engages with architecture in his work, which, he says, “explores how historic ideas and ideals persist or transform over time.” His work is held in the collections of New York’s Museum of Modern Art and Whitney Museum of American Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the National Gallery of Canada, among others. At Beth Sholom, Hartt’s installation will reflect on the shifting relationship between communities and the built environment, even as the synagogue’s present community is changing. The music of 19th-century American composer Louis Moreau Gottschalk will be incorporated into the work and performed live by Ethiopian pianist Girma Yifrashewa.

Additional unrestricted funds are added to each grant for general operating support.