Here is an interesting article on stained glass. You can find additional articles on the art of stained glass and links to articles and sites about the history of stained glass and stained glass museums here on our website. -Gwen
Stained glass reached the state of the art in the early 11th century. Many gothic structures used such windows and even today they impose themselves with their beauty and their ingenuity.
In those times men set up a glass factory wherever nature allowed one to be built, namely near a silica deposit. Silica is the main and most important ingredient in glass making.
To obtain colored panes, people used the help of chemistry. While still liquid, an amount of metallic oxide was mixed in the melting pot. This gave the material its color. Man knew colored glass from ancient times and so the Romans, the Egyptians and the Greeks were renowned glass artisans.
During the 5th and 6th century, the technique we know today as stained glass began to show its face. Early creations can be admired today in museums. At first, they combined thin pieces of alabaster inside a wooden frame; this gave a similar effect. Later on, Asian manufacturers used pieces of colored glass to create what we know today as stained glass.
For more detail, artists use painting techniques that enhance the overall design and complete difficult to fill areas.
One interesting thing about these marvelous windows is that the only role they play is to douse the light and to make it difficult to see what happens inside the structure. The themes used in these masterpieces are religious (inspired from bible), symbolic, or inspired from literature and myths. Some of them display scenes from the life of Jesus Christ and other religious figures. These are present everywhere on the windows of medieval churches.
Creating state of the art stained glass panes involves a lot of artistic genius and a lot of experience. Artistic skill and engineering skill are a must for designing the theme and the structure of such an artwork.
Nowadays, in the 21st century, this technique is used in combination with modern forms of art. A revival of the gothic style took place after WWII. Many monuments lost their windows during the war. Great German artists like Ervin Bossanyi, Ludwig Schaffrath, Johannes Shreiter, and Douglas Strachan took the matter in their own hands and struggled to make and old art form a contemporary one.
Nowadays there are not many places where to study the traditional ways of stained glass making. Despite this fact, stained glass is frequently used for home accessories and interior design elements. Whether if it’s a lamp or a window, a piece of stained glass will always add a finishing touch to your home.
Keith Londrie II is the Webmaster of Stained-glass-info.info, a website that specializes in providing information on stained Glass that you can research on the internet. (This site no longer exists, hence we’ve removed the link. )