Bringing Back 16th-century Beauty at the Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology, Brisbane

The Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology holds a significant collection of medieval and Victorian stained-glass windows that are in desperate need of conservation. The museum, just north of Brisbane, is one of Australia’s foremost collectors of fine arts and antiquities. It is a registered charity, but receives no operational funding from any level of government.

Fig. 1. The window to be conserved

Fig. 1. The window to be conserved

A conservation assessment and report conducted in 2006 noted that a 16th-century window in the collection should be conserved within five years, but due to lack of funds this has not occurred. It has now become a priority to raise the funds needed to conserve the window, which contains two panels: an intriguing German roundel of a lady and a shield with the name CECYLIA, and a shield with ermine thought to have come from Lincoln’s Inn, London.

The funds raised will be used for the conservation of these panels. The intention is to dismantle the panel, clean it, edge-bond where possible, replace modern fragments with more appropriate glass, and relead. The work that is part of the Abbey Museum’s stained glass conservation programme, and has been authorized by the museum’s Board.

The Abbey Museum has been fundraising since 2006 to enable the conservation of the 43 panels in its collection. The conservation of 14 has been funded to date through donations. Another three are currently undergoing conservation and should be reinstalled in the Abbey Church before Christmas. Although much has been achieved, as the years pass the urgency to get these windows conserved increases.

For more information on this project, and to donate, see the website.

Society of Glass Technology Conferences: Calls for Papers

The Society of Glass Technology has announced the conferences it will be holding in 2014 and is calling for papers.  The SGT Living Glass conference will be heading to Durham University and will also host Glassac14.  Attendees might want to visit the cathedral while they are in the city to view its magnificent stained glass.

Fig. 1. SGT Poster

Fig. 1. SGT Poster

Authors are invited to submit abstracts for consideration, for oral and poster presentations. Topics can include: restoration and conservation of glass; dating and provenance of glass; glass decoration and enamel; glass corrosion and weathering; glass science; glass surfaces; bio-glasses; environmental issues; thermodynamics of glass; glass-production technology; raw materials; mechanical and optical properties; glass melting, forming and efficiency; archaeometry of glass; raw materials; sol-gel glasses; and raising public awareness of all forms of glass, ancient and modern.

SGT ‘Living Glass’

Dates: 10–12 September 2014

Scope: This event will explore science, technology and art in relation to glass. ‘Science’ will address themes ranging from novel materials and fabrication routes to structure and properties. ‘Technology’ will include areas such as the environment, fuel usage, advances in production processes, modelling and glass applications. ‘Art’ will deal with the long traditions of stained glass in the religious buildings of the north-east of England. See the website for more details.

GLASSAC14: Glass Science in Art and Conservation

Dates: 10–12 September 2014, excursion on 13 September

Scope: The GLASSAC series of international conferences aims to unite science and art, with the objective to bring together people from all specialisms within the glass community to improve the understanding of and care for the heritage we have in historic glass artefacts. The scope of the congress includes all aspects of the history, technology, art, science, conservation and the manufacture of glass and glass artefacts. Audience discussion will be invited after each paper. See the website for more details.

•    Deadline for submission of abstracts 27 January 2014
•    Notification of acceptance of abstracts 28 March 2014
•    Submission of extended abstracts 20 May 2014
•    Early bird registration ends 1 July 2014

The Stained Glass Museum 2014 Annual Study Weekend

The Stained Glass Museum’s 2014 study weekend ‘Salisbury and Wiltshire’ will be on Thursday 24 – Sunday 27 April 2014. It will take place in the delightful county of Wiltshire, where the group will be based in Salisbury.

Fig. 1. Wilton Church, east window: the Prodigal Son is led away

Fig. 1. Wilton Church, east window: the Prodigal Son is led away

Visits will include a number of sites with stained glass from the early medieval period to the twentieth century. Highlights include magnificent 12th- and 13th-century French stained glass at Wilton; the 14th-century scheme at Edington; the 17th-century glass by Abraham van Linge at Lydiard Tregoze; and the 19th- and 20th-century glass at Alderbury and Salisbury Cathedral. There will also be a three-course dinner in the enchanting chapter house at Salisbury Cathedral. The main guide will be Dr David O’Connor, a member of the British CVMA committee, who has published widely on medieval and Victorian stained glass.

Costs: residential £400 per person (three nights half board); non-residential £200 per person (including three evening meals); non-residential £100 per person (visits only). All prices include travel, audio headset, and a conference pack with site notes

Accommodation: at the Grasmere House Hotel, Salisbury, a fine Victorian house surrounded by mature gardens. Situated on the banks of the Rivers Avon and Nadder, the hotel is only a few minutes’ walk from the city centre and offers superb cathedral views.

Reservations: to reserve a place on the study weekend, please email, or telephone 01353 660347. A deposit of £150 per person is required by 1 February 2014, and full payment should be received by 1 April 2014. Please make cheques payable to ‘The Stained Glass Museum’.

New Window Designed by Artist Richard Wright Made and Installed by the York Glaziers Trust at Tate Britain


Fig. 1. Detail of the window © Nick Teed

Fig. 1. Detail of the window © Nick Teed

York Glaziers Trust has completed the making and installation of a brand new window for Tate Britain, London, designed by Turner Prize winning artist Richard Wright. The window, situated in the Millbank foyer, uses only clear, hand-made glass and a delicate geometric leaded design set within an elegant metal framework. Glasses of different type and structure were carefully chosen by the artist and were made especially for this commission by English Antique Glass of Alvechurch, near Redditch. The glass types include reamy, stipple, Venetian, seedy and Norman slab. The effect created is that of a banner suspended within the window, the appearance of which changes with the light and the observer’s viewpoint.

Richard Wright is well known for his site-specific artworks in architectural spaces, and the window, one of the final pieces of a refurbishment of the gallery, was unveiled to the public on 19 November.

Tiffany Glass on Display in the USA

Historic Tiffany Windows on Display in Waco, Texas

Fig. 1. Pergamos. (Photography by Douglas A. Lockard, reproduced courtesy of In Company with Angels, Inc.)

Fig. 1. Pergamos. (Photography by Douglas A. Lockard, reproduced courtesy of In Company with Angels, Inc.)

In Company with Angels’, a unique exhibition of seven stained-glass Tiffany windows, has opened for a three-month period at the Lee Lockwood Library and Museum, Waco, Texas. It features 8ft-tall windows depicting the seven angels of the churches in Asia Minor named in the book of Revelation. The series was created in 1902 by the Comfort Tiffany Studios for the Church of the New Jerusalem in Cincinnati, a Swedenborgian Christian congregation. The windows remained in situ until the church was demolished in 1964, when they were removed and placed in storage.

Fig. 2. Ephesus. (Photography by Douglas A. Lockard, reproduced courtesy of In Company with Angels, Inc.)

Fig. 2. Ephesus. (Photography by Douglas A. Lockard, reproduced courtesy of In Company with Angels, Inc.)

They were rediscovered in 2001 and subsequently restored, before being organized into an exhibition, which has toured east and midwest of the United States since 2007. The exhibition’s time in Waco is supported by the Historic Waco Foundation, a non-profit organization, whose mission is to collect, maintain, preserve, publish and interpret the heritage and history of Waco, McLennan County, and Texas.

As well as displaying these stunning windows, the exhibition also serves to emphasize the importance of historic preservation, and a programme of lectures and activities exploring the multiple layers of art, history and religion that meet in the Tiffany angels and their story will run in Waco during the exhibition.

For more information see the website and facebook pages here and here.

‘Louis Comfort Tiffany: Treasures from the Driehaus Collection in Chicago

Treasures selected from the more than 1,500 Tiffany pieces collected by Driehaus since 1980 are on display at an exhibition in Chicago. The exhibition features stained-glass windows and to accompany the exhibition, the Driehaus Museum is offering a variety of public programmes, including ‘Around Town with Tiffany’ tours on Saturdays that feature an opportunity to view the Tiffany windows in the Driehaus Gallery at the Smith Museum of Stained Glass Windows on Navy Pier.

The exhibition will run until 29 June 2014, Tuesday to Sunday, 10am – 5pm (first and third Thursdays of the month until 8pm), at the Driehaus Museum, 40 E. Erie St, Chicago. See here for more information.

Rare works by Albrecht Dürer on Display at the Courtauld Gallery

Fig. 1. A design by Dürer of the Virgin and Child

Fig. 1. A design by Dürer of the Virgin and Child

An exhibition entitled ‘The Young Dürer: Drawing the Figure’ has opened at the Courtauld Gallery, London. One of the most important artists of the Northern Renaissance, Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528) produced many designs for stained glass. Previous Vidimus articles have highlighted the importance of Dürer and his impact on stained glass design: see Vidimus 7, 10, 12 and 21.

Fig. 2. Dürer’s cartoon executed in stained glass in the Pfinzing Window, St. Sebald, Nürnberg.

Fig. 2. Dürer’s cartoon executed in stained glass in the Pfinzing Window, St. Sebald, Nürnberg.

The exhibition focuses on the artist’s years as a journeyman (c.1490–96), during which he travelled widely in the Upper Rhine region and Italy, learning and experimenting, transforming himself from a late medieval goldsmith-turned-artist into a genius of the Northern Renaissance. It explores the ways in which Dürer reinvented artistic traditions through an ambitious new approach to the figure, rooted in the study of his own body, and features early works by the artist, alongside rare drawings and prints by his contemporaries, many of which have never been seen in the United Kingdom.

The exhibition runs until 12 January 2014. See the website for more information.

Stained Glass Film Launch Event

Fig. 1. An example of McCartney’s work

Fig. 1. An example of McCartney’s work

The Scottish Stained Glass Symposium & Trust and the School of Scottish Studies Archives (University of Edinburgh) have announced the release of their new DVD ‘Crear McCartney’s Dolphinton Windows’. Filmed in the studio and on site at Black Mount Parish Church, Dolphinton (Peebleshire), between July 2008 and February 2009, the film offers a unique opportunity to witness the creation of a pair of stained glass windows from design to installation.

The film will be launched at the Scottish Storytelling Centre, 45–47 High Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1SR on Monday 25 November, 6–8p.m.

Crear McCartney (b. 1931) gained a diploma in design (stained glass) at Glasgow School of Art in 1955. He has designed and made over 100 stained-glass windows, primarily in Scotland, including commissions for Pluscarden Abbey (1955); St Magnus Cathedral, Orkney (1987); St Eval Church, Cornwall (1989); St Michael’s Church, Linlithgow (1992); and Stirling Castle great hall (1993). The film is 45 minutes long and the DVD includes a booklet about McCartney’s creative process and the Dolphinton Windows commission. The project has been generously supported by Historic Scotland, the Radcliffe Trust, the Binks Trust, Dr Margaret A. Mackay, and the late Michael Walker, and in kind by Edinburgh University’s School of Scottish Studies Archives and the Scottish Stained Glass Trust. All proceeds from the sale of the film will be divided between the Scottish Stained Glass Symposium & Trust, for its work recording and promoting stained glass in Scotland, and the Ian MacKenzie Memorial Fund, whose proceeds support the School of Scottish Studies Archives, with particular emphasis on the development of visual records of life in Scotland.

For more information email

Call for Abstracts: Collecting through Connections: Glass and Stained-glass Collectors and their Networks in the 19th Century

Fig.1. Conference poster.

Fig.1. Conference poster.

The VICARTE research unit (Glass and Ceramic for the Arts and Parques de Sintra – Monte da Lua) have announced an international conference Collecting through Connections: Glass and Stained-glass Collectors and their Networks in the 19th Century, which will be held in Lisbon 4–6 February of 2015 [Fig. 1]. Abstracts focusing on 19th-century collecting practices for glass and stained glass are invited. Selected papers will be published before the conference.

The aim of the conference is to develop knowledge about the art market for historical glass and stained glass during the 19th century; the contacts and network of collectors; the criteria for collecting; and the use and display of the objects within the collector’s domestic space. Abstracts that answer one (or more) of the following questions are welcome.
•    Why collect? Papers may address cultural, social, political and even economic themes relating to the collecting of glass in the 19th century.
•    Who gathers? Papers should focus on collectors and their personal relationships. Social backgrounds, cultural interests, family contacts (correspondence), and the foundation of historical associations are some of the issues to be discussed.
•    Where to buy? Papers may focus on the identification of dealers and agents, as well as on the supply chain for historical glass.
•    Which provenance? Papers may address techniques and methods to identify the original provenance of objects, from chemical analysis to archival research.
•    What to assemble? Diversity is common to most of 19th-century collections of glass and stained glass, but what exactly are the criteria for the acquisition of objects? What are collectors’ preferences? Case studies are particularly welcomed.
•    How to display? Papers should explore and focus on the ideas behind the display of collections.

250-word abstracts should be submitted with a short CV before 23 December 2013 to For more details or enquiries, please visit the website, or email registration.ctc@campus.fct.un.

Stained Glass on Facebook

The British Society of Master Glass Painters has recently launched a Facebook page, which you can find here. Check the page for news, events, lectures and publications, and don’t forget that Vidimus also has a page at  We welcome readers to post on our facebook page; discuss glass-related issues, give opinions on our issues, suggest further readings, ask questions and reach out to other glass enthusiasts!