History or comments
Called one of the 20 most architecturally significant synagogues in the USA.
A group of Jews met for Rosh Hashanah in 1887 at a private home in an area then known as East Port Chester. That meeting was the beginning of today’s Congregation Kneses Tifereth Israel. The egalitarian Conservative congregation has built upon its long history, inclusive of all families committed to Judaism.
The synagogue building, designed by the famous architect Phillip Johnson, has been called one of the twenty most architecturally significant synagogues in the United States. Phillip Johnson (1906 – 2005) was known for his stunning iconic designs such as New York City’s Seagram’s Building, Glass House in New Canaan, Connecticut, Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, California and Kennedy Memorial in Dallas as well as the New York State Pavilion for the 1964 World’s Fair. Johnson was a recipient of the American Institute of Architects Gold Medal and in 1979 the first Pritzker Architecture Prize.
Johnson’s design for the Synagogue is a pure rectangular form of pre-cast concrete panels with 286 narrow-slit Belgian stained glass windows. The column-free interior space soars 40 feet to a curved canopy ceiling suggesting the tents our ancestors worshipped in after their exodus from Egypt. Skylights above the canopy provide an ethereal luminous glow.