Author: Jim Cheshire

This book presents a study that is an attempt to understand the phenomenal increase in the production and demand for stained glass between about 1835 and 1860. The book provides both history and context for thousands of Victorian stained-glass windows that exist in churches across the country. It aims to: ask why people became interested in stained glass; examine how glass-painters set up their studios; and understand how they interacted with each other and their patrons. To understand why so many windows were commissioned and made in the Victorian period, readers need to understand how buying a stained-glass window became a relatively ordinary thing to do. In order to examine this, the book focuses on those who wrote or spoke about stained glass in the formative years of the revival. It is important to look at the production of stained glass as a cultural exchange: a negotiation in both financial and cultural terms that was profitable for both glass-painter and patron. The history of Victorian stained glass allows an examination of many other areas of nineteenth-century cultural history. Readers can learn a lot about the aesthetics of the Gothic Revival, ecclesiology, the relationship between 'fine' and 'decorative' art, and the circulation of art history in the 1840s. While many interesting glass-painters have necessarily been omitted, the author hopes that the case studies in the book will provide a point of reference for the research of future scholars.

Jim Cheshire

IN THE HANDS of a clergyman like John Edwin Lance, stained glass was more than just decoration. In his newly rebuilt church at Buckland St Mary in Somerset, he used stained glass to vary the quality of the light entering the building, and so change our experience of the interior. Richly painted windows surrounding the chancel and baptistry announce that here are the key liturgical areas, while the

in Stained Glass and the Victorian Gothic Revival
How and why the market spread
Jim Cheshire

WITH all the preceding information in mind, why did the market for stained glass increase so dramatically between 1840 and 1860? Several explanations have already been offered. The underlying cause was that the Church of England recognised the need for internal revival and building more churches was seen as a way of achieving this. The form that many of these churches took was determined by the

in Stained Glass and the Victorian Gothic Revival
Jasmine Allen

152 5 Stained glass as propaganda Stained glass rarely appears in secondary literature on nationalism,1 imperialism,2 or race,3 yet along with other art forms it played an important role in shaping and visualising national consciousness, propelling political and imperial regimes in the nineteenth century. This chapter demonstrates how these themes influenced the subject matter, interpretation, and critical discussion of stained glass in the nineteenth century, as demonstrated by the many windows shown at the international exhibitions. The first part discusses

in Windows for the world
Classification, organisation and status
Jasmine Allen

19 1 Exhibiting stained glass: classification, organisation and status The art of glass-​painting can rarely receive justice in a general exhibition. Its dimmed light is injurious to most other objects. It is as exclusive in an exhibition as a beech-​tree in a forest, under which nothing else will grow. – Thomas Gambier Parry, 18671 Stained glass is an art form fundamentally concerned with the interplay of light and colour, and enhanced by the formal elements of line (both decorative and structural) and ornament. Transmitted light gives the translucent glass

in Windows for the world
Jim Cheshire

ALTHOUGH much of this book is devoted to a detailed examination of small and medium-scale glass-painting ateliers, in order to understand the revival of stained glass it is crucial to ask just why the big studios were so successful. This is not an easy question to answer, but some conclusions can be drawn about how studios related to each other, and how they worked within the market as a whole. This chapter

in Stained Glass and the Victorian Gothic Revival
Jim Cheshire

A mere artisan? JOHN TOMS inhabited a different world from the people who produced the ecclesiological discourse on stained glass. It is doubtful whether he set out to gain artistic credibility, at least in the same sense that William Warrington did; nor did he represent himself as a pious religious artist producing Christian art. In fact, more than anyone, Toms resembled Winston’s worst nightmare: the

in Stained Glass and the Victorian Gothic Revival
Abstract only
St Michael and All Angels, Sowton and St Mary the Virgin, Ottery St Mary
Jim Cheshire

THIS CHAPTER will explore how windows were used in two specific ecclesiastical interiors and what aspirations patrons and architects had for the stained glass in these churches. The preceding case studies have examined how glass-painters made and promoted their windows and it is now necessary to look at stained glass from the patron’s perspective. The two glazing projects described in this chapter

in Stained Glass and the Victorian Gothic Revival
Jim Cheshire

THE BEER FAMILY made stained glass from the earliest days of the Victorian Gothic Revival and did not cease until the last years of the nineteenth century. Their output was extensive, at least 149 windows, and this accounts for most but not all of their glass. Although much glass has survived, virtually no documentation exists for the Beer business and so analysis of this side of their operation has to be

in Stained Glass and the Victorian Gothic Revival
Jim Cheshire

THE STAINED-GLASS STUDIO established by Joseph Bell in Bristol presents an ideal case study for this book: many of Bell’s windows survive intact and rare archival information about the firm survives. Joseph Bell’s jobs book covers the period between March 1843 and January 1856 and documents the vast majority of Bell’s output. 1 In addition to the jobs book Joseph Bell’s notebooks have survived

in Stained Glass and the Victorian Gothic Revival