The Bialik House in Tel Aviv was the home of Israel’s national poet, Haim Nahman Bialik, and is now a museum dedicated to him.
Here you can see impressive architecture, works of art from the poet’s private collection, a rich library, and an exhibition which notes Bialik’s many accomplishments.
The house was built in 1924, upon Bialik’s arrival at the Land of Israel, and is still today one of Tel Aviv’s most authentic and beautiful houses.
After his death in 1934, the house served as the Hebrew Writers’ Association and the Bialik House Society, whose function was to preserve the place.
However, over the years the house became a children’s library until it was renovated in 1980 and became a museum faithful to the spirit of the eighties.
In this spirit, the bathroom and kitchen facilities were abolished for offices, the bedroom turned into a showroom, the house was painted in bright colors, and the front was sprayed with grayish spritz.
Thankfully, a preservation architect, restored the house removed the overpaint and exposing to their unique decorations.
The original furniture was refurbished and a new permanent exhibition was built to display it.
The intent was to blend the unique aesthetic of the house and highlight the national poet in all the rich circles of his work and cultural and social works.
For the first time Bialik House addresses the many activities of the poet even as a leader and guide, commentator and researcher, the Jewish Cultural Treasure Conference, essayist and speaker, editor, translator, publisher and living Hebrew language
The goal of the museum was not only to show Bialik’s spirit but also to note the aesthetics of the early 20th century in Israel.
The unique eclectic construction combining eastern and western elements, oriental and European decorations: arches, tower, dome, fireplace, painted floors and more.
The the architecture is in the “Hebrew style” which attempted to combine western building forms with stylistic elements characteristic of the Middle East, or thought or known, to have been in use in the ancient Jewish kingdoms of Eretz Israel.
The interior is in the Arts and Crafts movement style, then popular in northern Europe.
The most impressive tiles are in the first floor reception room.
There, a columned archway featuring the tiles produced by the Bezalel school with the designs of Ze’ev Raban produced as ceramic art tiles.
One of the columns has tile cartouches of the twelve months, the other, the twelve tribes of Israel.
On the sides are a pair of cartouches, one, the famous “Judea capta” coin issued by the Emperor Titus after the Roman defeat of the Jewish Revolt and destruction of Jerusalem the 70 BCE.
The well-known coin shows a woman, Judea, sitting under a palm tree in chains, over her stands the Roman Emperor in armor.
The artist riffs on this familiar image with a scene featuring Judea liberated, rising as the chains break.
The Beit Bialik Archive is located on the lower floor of the house.
As part of the renovation work, the archive area was doubled and advanced systems were installed to preserve the valuable documents.
The archive combines Bialik’s entire cultural and national work: rare manuscripts, poems, stories, articles, speeches, documents and more.
For visiting hours see the Bialik House webpage. Tours are available.