Editor’s Note: This is an installment in the series “The Art of Business,” which highlights the works of art found in the Spencer Fox Eccles Business Building and will be featured regularly on the Eccles Extra blog.

Strand Book Store

The Strand Book Store boasts more than 18 miles of books at its Greenwich Village location in New York City.

It has come a long way since it opened in 1927. Then, 25-year-old Ben Bass took $300 of his own and another $300 from a friend and opened a used bookstore on what was called Book Row — six city blocks that housed 48 bookstores. He named it after the street in London where great authors such as William Makepeace Thackeray and Charles Dickens penned their great works. The Strand, as it is lovingly called, is the sole remaining bookstore from Book Row.

In 1957, Bass’s son Fred returned from military deployment and worked with his father, moving the bookstore to its current location on 12th Street and Broadway. Fred Bass’s daughter, Nancy, now co-manages the store with her father.

The store houses more than 2.5 million used, new and rare books, covering just about every topic imaginable, from philosophy to finance to fiction. Customers can order personalized libraries created by The Strand, or they can be rented for movie and play sets.

The miles of books, stacked floor to ceiling, offers something for everyone. Is there a rare or out-of-print book you’d go hunting for (or have found) at The Strand?

About the Artist

Gibbs M. Smith is an alum of the University of Utah, earning both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in history. He is the founder and president of Gibbs Smith Publishing, and the art he has loaned to the Eccles School demonstrates his passion for books and bookmaking. He has spent the past 35 years painting the bookstores he has visited around the country. Some have since closed, but many still thrive today. Hopefully, these paintings conjure up