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Ben Shahn 1898-1969

A Russian-born illustrator, printmaker and muralist, he came to stained glass late in his career. The congregation of Temple Beth Zion in Buffalo, New York had purchased a painting of Shahn’s at a New York art gallery. This painting became the inspiration and design for the bema window. They also commissioned Shahn to design a large façade window for the expanding curved opening (shown at right). Ben Shahn and Henry Lee Willet learned from each other as they created this fabulous window. Mr. Shahn liked to describe himself as “Mr. Willet’s Newest Apprentice.”