Here is a view of the front entrance of Sterling Memorial Library in 1931, the year the building opened.
And here is a current view of the library's front entrance.
When visitors come through the High Street entrance, they enter the nave, facing the circulation desk and a painting of Alma Mater surrounded by allegorical figures representing her academic schools.
This view of the nave towards the High Street entrance shows glass artist Owen Bonawit's clerestory windows, which will be restored as part of the renovation.
Bonawits’ six stained glass saints are rendered in Art Deco style. Three of them are named Honesty, Imagination, and Courage
This area will become a soft-seating area. The card catalog cabinets that are flush to the walls will remain to provide textured boundaries to a conversation area with sofas and chairs.
As shown in this floor plan, the restored nave will provide a direct path from the High Street entrance through the current circulation desk and to the library collections. (Drawing courtesy of Helpern Architects)
This sketch shows the circulation desk post-renovation. (Drawing courtesy of Helpern Architects)
The reconfiguration of the south aisle, which currently contains the empty card catalog drawers, will create seating and tables for study and conversation. (Drawing courtesy of Helpern Architects)
The north aisle of the nave, facing to the Selin Courtyard, will become the new home for library services, including circulation, information, and privileges. (Drawing courtesy of Helpern Architects)
As Sterling Memorial Library begins a major renovation of its nave, here is a look at the library — past, present, and future.