Ornamental Iron Armatures

Having spent many years as an armchair scholar of architectural history and a collector of artifacts from that history, it eventually occurred to me that antique architectural fragments could be nicely utilized in stained glass art. There were a number of wrought iron (now called forged steel) pieces around and I made some works using these pieces as reinforcing armatures. I knew that in the dawn of our craft, since glass and lead alone did not have the strength to hold up in the expansive cathedral windows that were aspired to, craftsmen used ornamental iron armatures to hold up the matrix and fortify it against the push of the wind.

My use of these components requires that accommodation be made for the places where the iron flares out and extends into the plane of the glass. Here a creative use of slumped and other dimensional glass is required. I use antique and new wrought iron and forged steel components. Occasionally, it is required that I cut and weld the material to get just the desired effect.

Although I consider my works to be modern manifestations of this ancient art, bringing this kind of historical quality into my compositions adds a flavor of romance and history.