Bernard Baruch Zakheim | fresco | 10 feet by 10 feet
This interior of a public library balances the law library by Harris at far left. Like other
artists, Zakheim peopled his scene (public library reading and periodical rooms) with portraits,
including his young daughter Ruth (in a blue and white middy blouse) and a self portrait reading
the Tenach, the Old Testament in Hebrew.
Above the window are three books lying on their sides in the central stack; their Hebrew letters
spell out the contents: Torah (Scriptures), Prophets, and Wisdom Literature, books of the Old
Testament. His "gun-slit" window invites the viewer up the steps into the library containing
classical authors like Defoe, Smollett, Fielding, Swift, and Oscar Wilde, as well as writers of the
1930s like Dos Passos, Jeffers, Stuart Chase, and Kenneth Rexroth, the young poet who supplied most
of the authors' names, here shown on the library ladder.