November 24, 2004

A Thankful Mac User...

Okay, I am a Macintosh computer user and see no reason to change, but this stained glass panel may take things a little too far...

Posted by Tom at 10:36 PM

November 12, 2004

German Expressionism - Ripe for Translation 2

I've long seen the potential for stained glass design in the works of the Expressionist painters and printmakers of the first half of the 20th century. The art features a strong use of black, vivid color, and a content filled with intense emotional figurative content.

There seem to be few stained glass windows made in that period or in that style. The only one I've ever see by a German Expressionist of that era is a window by Max Pechstein at the Busch Reisinger at Harvard. And they do not have a picture (or a mention) on their website and I never got a picture of it when I lived in Boston. I seem to remember it being a good size window (perhaps 3 feet wide by 8 feet tall?) with a female figure and some stylized animals. I remember there being an interesting use of flashed glass effects but I also remember the figure not being too striking. I'm not sure if the window was made before or after World War 2. I know Pechstein made other windows but I've never seen any pictures of them.

There tends to be so much more attention focused on the Post-war German glass artists than on Pre-war glass artists. Post War German stained glass artists mostly work in abstract or stark austere designs. Hardly ever figurative at all - Stockhausen being the only exception I'm aware of.

By way of demonstration - I've been playing with an image by Emil Nolde. A woodcut that always struck me as an image that could easily translate into stained glass.

Original woodcut print by Emil Nolde -

One 'Expressionistic' color possibility -

The leadline would be very simple using flashed glasses -

Now the coloring on this is actually more conventional, with blue for 'sky' or background and red seeming to symbolize 'blood'. Nolde himself, in his colorwork, very often did not go with natural or logical colors. That is, a background might just as easily be a bright harsh yellow as any other and a bright green might be on the face. So, here is another color possibility - perhaps more in line with the expressionistic dissonance of color -

Now if this were made into a more traditional, purely mosaic, style stained glass window - with color seperation NOT happening throught the use of flashed glass or colored enamel. The result might be more like this - the gradation of color could be acheived by careful selection of glass -

In this case the leadwork would be more complex, something like this

Posted by Tom at 03:19 PM

November 11, 2004

Light Made Solid

I don't do this very often but I googled 'stained glass blog' and, lo and behold, found another stained glass artist doing a blog - called Light Made Solid by an artist named Peter Boucher out of the Pittsburgh area. Interesting to read another blog by a someone working in the field. It's been a year doing this blog and this is the first one I've seen.
He's got a sketch section, which is rare for SG sites. I like this sketch in particular.

Posted by Tom at 01:28 PM

November 09, 2004

One year of blogging

This blog is one year old this week and it seems time for a brief overview. First of all, my orginal intention was to post at least once a week. Well, I've done a little better than once every 2 weeks. Not too bad, I guess, considering most blogs whither away after a few months.

I had to jettison the comments. Very few comments had been posted and I had little time to respond to those that were. More importantly, the comments section had started to receive spam and it's not worth policing that.

I have started to think of other blogs that might serve needs not covered by this blog. One would be a stained glass community blog. That is, one that would feature a group of authors and would encourage comments and discussion. I hope to see this developed one way or another over the next few months. Time will tell.

Another idea I have for a blog has to do with the large number of drawings that I have in reserve and how I would like to start showing those. I know that I could do that through this blog, but something tells me I need to structure it differently. Anyway, I have a prototype worked out that features one drawing a day. If this works out I will have a permanent link on the main website and on this blog.

Posted by Tom at 11:31 PM