The BBJ Mural

Main Sanctuary

Jewish Life, History, and Torah in Images

The spectacular mural on the back of the Sanctuary is the design of Rabbi Abraham Rosenberg, z”l hand painted in 1961 by visiting artist Gisbert Palmier. At approximately 60 feet long and 40 feet high, it very well maybe the largest work of hand painted Jewish Synagogue art in North America.  The images depict symbols of the months of the Jewish year, holidays, history as well as Biblical symbols.

Images on the perimeter depict the 12 astrological symbols corresponding to the 12 unique months of the Jewish year. The two arcs colorful squares and rectangles on the left and right sides depict the 12 tribes of Israel as they traveled through the desert from Egypt to the Land of Israel.   The two panels closest to the curtain depict symbols of Jewish daily life and annual observances.  The panel to the left includes a shofar representing the holiday of Rosh Hashonah, the lulav bundle and esrog for Sukkot, a Seder plate for Passover amongst other symbols.  The panel to the right includes symbols of daily observances including candles and challah for Shabbat, a havdallah candle, tzedakah box, and Torah scroll.
The curtain is the most recent addition to the sanctuary wall.  It was added approximately five years ago and was created by Jerusalem-based Judaica artist Moshe Moskovits.  The tree is meant to represent the Torah as a Tree of Life.  The colorful leaves of the tree refer to the colorful images of the 12 tribes on the mural.