- In Memoriam: Peter Laurence Martin MA MPhil
- Exhibition at The Stained Glass Museum: ‘Where the Buffalo Roam: Stained Glass from the American Frontier’
- BSMGP Autumn Lecture 2019” ‘Imported Continental Glass in Kent Churches’
- Friends of Gloucester Cathedral Lecture: ‘The Stained Glass of Tom Denny'
- Stained Glass discovery at Holkham Hall
- Reminder: Canterbury Cathedral Lecture Series: See-through Stories: Windows on the World
- Reminder: Stained Glass Museum Autumn Lecture Series
- Reminder: Stained Glass Museum Annual Lecture
In Memoriam: Peter Laurence Martin MA MPhil
It is with great sadness that we report the death of Peter Martin. A professional architect in private practice in Switzerland for 30 years, Peter was first drawn into stained glass studies by chance. While teaching at the University of Leeds, a cross country cycle ride in the Easter vacation of 2004 brought about an encounter with the sumptuous glazing installed in the church of Wragby. Recognising its Swiss origins, he began to research the collection, and in 2006 submitted an MSc (Eng) by research at the University of Leeds, entitled ‘The Late Georgian Trade in Swiss Stained Glass’. In January 2009 Peter registered as a research student in the History of Art department at York and embarked on a more ambitious project, examining the early 19th-century trade in stained glass between the U.K. and the Rhineland. Commuting between Leeds and his home and business in Switzerland, Peter was able to take a European perspective on this cultural commerce, which culminated in the award of his 2012 MPhil on ‘The European trade in Stained with special reference to the trade between the Rhineland and the United Kingdom, 1794-1835’.
In recent years, he had relocated to Driebergen in the Netherlands. In retirement he continued to research stained glass topics but was also active in the local Driebergen Culture Foundation (De Cuulturhoek), for whom he provided architectural expertise in the renovation and reuse of historic buildings. With his partner, Astrid, he also found time for travel until he was overtaken by illness. He died on 25 February 2019 after a short illness. His research can be consulted at: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/3269/
Exhibition at The Stained Glass Museum: ‘Where the Buffalo Roam: Stained Glass from the American Frontier’
September 9th, 2019 – February 20th, 2020
‘Where the Buffalo Roam’, by award-winning photojournalist M.J. Alexander, reflects the tumultuous history of the American frontier, as memorialised in the windows of its churches and chapels.
For centuries, the North American Plains were home to indigenous tribes that travelled with the seasons and the bison herds. The frontier was largely unsettled, and unexplored by outsiders. In 1803, rights to the vast lands between the Rocky Mountains and the Mississippi River were acquired from France by the newly formed United States as part of the Louisiana Purchase.
The area north of Texas and south of Kansas was reserved as Indian Territory. Beginning in the 1830s, under treaties that made way for white settlers, the region was designated as a new homeland for Native Americans. Tribes from the Southeast were forcibly marched there from their ancestral homes on routes that became known as The Trail of Tears. In 1889, after 50 years of relocations and the establishment of sovereign Indian Nations, the territory was opened to Land Runs for non-Natives. The population would soon surpass 1 million, and the territory joined the Union in 1907. It became the 46th state under the name of Oklahoma, from the Choctaw words for “red people.”
In the wake of statehood, several churches commissioned stained glass windows with portrayals of Native Americans, fat bison, rich crops and tall oil wells. In the years to come, new windows would commemorate the introduction of Christianity by 19th-century missionaries; negotiations between tribal chiefs and wily top-hatted, treaty-wielding federal agents; streams of settlers in covered wagons in an exodus to the promised land; and tributes to Native and Oklahoma-born martyrs and saints.
The exhibition features windows from European and American glassmakers, offering a variety of artistic styles and vantage points.
M.J. Alexander chronicles the people and places of the Great Plains and American West. Her work has been published by The New York Times and Time magazine, and featured in more than two dozen solo shows, including a 2018 European debut at London’s Crypt Gallery. A veteran journalist, playwright, librettist and lyricist, she is author and illustrator of two award-winning books of fine-art portraiture. The International Photography Hall of Fame describes her as “combining the vision of an artist with the skills of a storyteller.” She was inducted into the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame in 2019.
The Stained Glass Museum is housed in the south triforium of Ely Cathedral, and the exhibition can be found in the main gallery. Entrance is included in the Museum’s ticket price. For further information about this exhibition please contact 01353 660347 or see the Museum’s website.
BSMGP Autumn Lecture 2019” ‘Imported Continental Glass in Kent Churches’
Friday, 11th October 11th at 6.15pm
The British Society of Master Glass Painters’ (BSMGP) Autumn lecture for 2019 will be given by the Society’s Honourable Librarian, Leslie Smith. Taking as his theme Imported Continental Glass in Kent Churches, Leslie will explore the Flemish, Swiss and possibly German roundels now found in the churches of his home county, considering the roundels’ iconography and design sources; their provenance, import and sale, and the collectors who acquired them.
The lecture will be held at The Art Workers’ Guild, 6 Queen Square, Bloomsbury, London WC1N 3AR, and a buffet supper is available for those who wish to stay on after the lecture. Tickets for the lecture cost £17 and the buffet is a further £16. For further information and to book tickets, please visit the Society’s website.
Friends of Gloucester Cathedral Lecture: ‘The Stained Glass of Tom Denny'
Friday, 4th October 2019, 4.30 – 7.45pm
In this lecture, stained glass author, Adrian Barlow, will discuss the achievements of one of the most accomplished and recognisable contemporary stained glass artists, in a cathedral fortunate enough to house a number of examples of Tom Denny’s work. Memorials to the composers Gerald Finzi and Ivor Gurney can be seen in the Lady Chapel, with some of his beautiful earlier work on display in the St Thomas Chapel in the South Ambulatory.
The event begins with tea and cake in the Chapter House at 4.30pm, followed by a lecture in the Lady Chapel at 6.30pm. Evensong may be attended at 5.30pm if wished.
Tickets are priced at £10 for members of the Friends of Gloucester Cathedral, and £12.50 for non-members and guests, and are available from the Friends Office, 11a College Green, Gloucester, GL1 2LX, or online. For further information please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01452 522419. The deadline for booking is 19th September.
Stained Glass discovery at Holkham Hall
At Holkham, in Norfolk, a large, beautifully-preserved panel of stained glass was recently discovered in the Hall’s cellars (Fig, 1). Modern but with similarities in style to early medieval work at sites such as Canterbury Cathedral, it is not (yet) known where the glass comes from, or why it was at Holkam. Holkham would be delighted to hear any suggestions or ideas from readers of Vidimus.
Reminder: Canterbury Cathedral Lecture Series: See-through Stories: Windows on the World
Continuing the theme of the trio of lectures given in May, this September and October three further lectures will be presented by leading public speakers taking as their inspiration Canterbury Cathedral’s stained glass windows and the figures represented within them.
18 September: Professor Tod Linafelt (Georgetown University, USA) ‘What Does it Mean to be Human?: Adam (and Eve) Inside and Outside the Garden’
25 September: Neil McGregor (Founding Director Humboldt Forum, Berlin; former Director of the British Museum) ‘The Shepherds, the Magi and the Presentation in the Temple’
2 October: Paula Gooder (British theologian, Canon Chancellor of St Paul’s Cathedral) ‘On Veiling and Unveiling: Church and Synagogue in Stained Glass and the Writings of Paul’
The talks are supported by The Friends of Canterbury Cathedral in association with the University of Kent, and will take place in the Canterbury Cathedral Stained Glass Studio. Arrive at 6.30pm in the Cathedral for a guided tour of the windows (or at 5.30pm for Choral Evensong beforehand). Each talk will begin at 7.00pm. Tickets cost £8 per talk or £35 for the full series. Entrance is free for school students and teachers. Booking is required. For further details and to book tickets, see the Cathedral website.
Reminder: Stained Glass Museum Autumn Lecture Series
This Autumn, the Museum’s lecture series will focus on the concept of the ‘new’ in relation to stained glass: new commissions, new discoveries of medieval glass, and new ways of looking at the medium. The series comprises four lectures, each beginning at 2pm, and taking place in Ely Cathedral Education & Conference Centre, Palace Green, Ely, CB7 4EW.
Wednesday, 2nd October
Mid-Century Modernity: New Ways of Looking at Postwar Stained Glass, by Jane Brocket.
This talk looks at the post-war period from a new angle, and considers the evolution of the pictorial tradition in windows made from 1945 to the late 1960s. It reveals a multitude of fascinating windows inspired by and reflecting the modern world, ordinary people, and everyday life. The work of a number of little-known but highly skilled, prolific designers and makers such as Harry Stammers, Harry Harvey, GER Smith, MC Farrar-Bell and John Hayward, who are now too often overlooked and underrated, they show that the period has much more to offer than Coventry Cathedral and John Piper alone. Jane is the author of the recently-published How to Look at Stained Glass, an unstuffy guide to glass of all periods aimed at making looking at stained glass entertaining and rewarding.
Wednesday, 9th October
Redisplaying Fragments of the Newly Discovered Medieval Glazing of Westminster Abbey by Laura Atkinson.
In June 2018, The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Galleries opened at Westminster Abbey, displaying to the public previously unseen treasures from the Abbey’s collections. Preparation work for the Galleries led to the discover of almost 30,000 fragments of stained glass, hidden beneath the triforium floor, mostly dating back to the Middle Ages. Some of the fragments are now on display within the Galleries, whilst others were used to create two new windows installed in the bridge leading to the gallery. This talk discusses the creation of these window by the Canterbury Cathedral Studios, the challenges they presented, and the opportunity that arose to create an innovative new fragment display system. Laura is a conservator at the Canterbury Studio, and led the Westminster Abbey glass finds project.
Wednesday, 16th October
New Glass Commissions and their Significance in the Life and Worship of a Church or Cathedral, by Becky Clark.
Commissioning new stained glass is a major moment in the life of churches and cathedrals, and one of those which the Church of England’s permission-giving authorities see as potentially controversial and divisive. Whilst the opportunities of new art to bring in new audiences and engage with people through creativity and beauty are inherent, the potential to get things wrong is always present. This talk explores the reasons new stained glass might be commissioned, draws on projects and approaches that have been successful (and not) and will aim to inspire those who might be considering new stained glass in their own church to make the most of an often once-in-a-generation chance to add something significant to the history of the building. Becky is Director of Churches and Cathedrals for the Archbishops’ Council of the Church of England; Secretary of the Church Buildings Council and Cathedrals Fabric Commission for England.
Wednesday, 23rd October
John McLean’s three windows for Norwich Cathedral, by Rev. Canon Jeremy Haselock.
In 2014 three new colourful stained glass windows were installed in the north aisle of the nave of Norwich Cathedral. The windows were designed by British abstract painter John Maclean. Rev. Canon Jeremy Haselock, currently Chaplain to Her Majesty the Queen, and former Vice-Dean of Norwich Cathedral will tell us more about this commission and Maclean’s creative process. Tickets cost £9 for an individual lecture and £35 for the series, discounts are available to Friends of the Stained Glass Museum. For further information, and to book tickets, see the Stained Glass Museum website https://stainedglassmuseum.com/lectures.html
Reminder: Stained Glass Museum Annual Lecture
Monday, 16th September 2019, 2.00 pm
Ely Cathedral Education & Conference Centre, Palace Green, Ely
David Hillman’s Stained Glass windows for Synagogues: A lecture by Prof David Newman OBE Followed by a viewing of the David Hillman ‘Purim’ window from the Old Bayswater Synagogue in The Stained Glass Museum. In this talk Prof. Newman will shed light on the life and work of David Hillman (1894-1974), a prolific Anglo-Jewish artist who understood the deep connection between art and religion. Hillman was born in Glasgow and his father was Dayan Samuel Isaac Hillman, of the London Beth Din. He created stained glass windows for many London Synagogues, and one of his windows made for the old Bayswater Synagogue (demolished 1966) is on display at The Stained Glass Museum. Prof. David Newman is a great nephew of the stained glass artist David Hillman, and a re-searcher of political geography and geopolitics at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel. On a recent sabbatical, Prof. Newman has been researching the stained glass windows created by artist David Hillman that can be found in synagogues in Israel and England. He is interested in both their artistic content and the social context of the people who were involved in their creation – ranging from Eastern Europe to Britain and to Israel. Booking is now open through the Museum website. Tickets cost £9 for Guests and £7.50 for Friends of the Stained Glass Museum.