Friday 25 July 2008

Rosslyn Hill windows on another world...

It's one of those great little gems - and is so impressive that my little disposable camera has captured the spirit but not the essence...

But here on Rosslyn Hill in the Unitarian Chapel we have a stained glass window from a Wiliam Morris (1834-1896) and Edward Byne Jones (1833-1898) collaboration.

The delicacy of the colour, the shades and the way they are deployed is quite magical...

The extent to which Morris and Byrne Jones affected design cannot be under-estimated. But it's also important to understand they way in which they moved at the very top of society. Rudyard Kipling and Stanley Baldwin were both nephews of Byrne Jones and Morris was an avowed socialist working with Eleanor Marx and Friedrich Engels.

Baldwin spoke at Byrne Jones's centenary exhibition and is quoted as saying
"In my view, what he did for us common people was to open, as never had been opened before, magic casements of a land of faery in which he lived throughout his life ... It is in that inner world we can cherish in peace, beauty which he has left us and in which there is peace at least for ourselves.

"The few of us who knew him and loved him well, always keep him in our hearts, but his work will go on long after we have passed away. It may give its message in one generation to a few or in other to many more, but there it will be for ever for those who seek in their generation, for beauty and for those who can recognise and reverence a great man, and a great artist"

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