I am wondering if you can tell me a little about this artist. What was his background? Did he have any known political or spiritual beliefs?
Bertram Hartman was an American painter who was born in Kansas and studied in Chicago, Munich and Paris. He spent much of his career in New York. His work is now held in many collections around the world, including Brooklyn Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Whitney. I'm sorry, though, my colleagues and I don't know anything about his religion.
Many artists in the 1920s liked to paint this particular scene because it included different types of architecture that reminded them how New York City was changing at the time.
It definitely shows the friction between old New York and new New York, in architectural terms -- the older Trinity Church and the newer skyscrapers with their "stepped" upper levels. He also painted the Brooklyn Bridge, a famous architectural symbol of modernity!