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Frank Lloyd Wright And His Contribution to Stained Glass

On 09, Apr 2019 | No Comments | In Aggrigate, Stained Glass Design & Styles | By Martin Faith

The Beautiful Design Legacy of Frank Lloyd Wright

When you hear the name Frank Lloyd Wright, you probably think of lovely homes from the ’50s with stunning straight lines and bold colors but not stained glass windows.  However, as it turns out. Frank Lloyd Wright was a prolific stained glass artist of the 20th century not by coincidence–of the most influential designers in American history. Although he is most known for his architectural feats and being the father of the “Mid-century Modern” his amazing design sense spanned various mediums from furniture design to graphics arts and, of course–even stained glass.

Frank Lloyd Wright The Stained Glass Artist

A 70-year career as a designer allowed Frank Lloyd Wright to accomplish quite a bit in his life.  He not only made a profoundly lasting mark on the American design scape but also create a ton of amazing stained glass too.  All of his designs, stained glass, architectural and otherwise, are as relevant today, as they were back in the early to the mid 20th century.  But his stained glass work is truly extraordinary and profuse; he designed well over 4,000 leaded glass windows and doors for over 150 of his buildings.

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Stained Glass Style

Wright created stained glass for almost any building features that you can imagine: doors, skylights, backlit ceiling panels, table lamps, and wall sconces as well as for window.  However, the reason for his success in the stained glass arena– he didn’t think of these windows as traditional stained or leaded glass. Wright has a unique approach to stained glass windows and often referred to them as “light screens”.  He viewed them more as Japanese shoji screens rather than a leaded window. As such, he arranged his windows in bands–not unlike shoji screens. Wright’s designs relied heavily on the zinc-or copper-plated came configuration, while all others of the time were still using traditional lead.  This type of caming let him create geometric abstractions of natural elements such as plants, trees, flowers and more. His color use was playful but elegant–a mix of solid-colored, iridescent and clear glass and sometimes a hallmark style of gold leaf sandwiched between two thin pieces of clear glass.  A revolutionary of his time, he pioneered setting some pieces of his stained glass at an angle which greatly enhanced the reflective qualities of the glass pieces in his windows. When light strikes his angled glass, different colors will appear depending on the time of day. It was this creativity and thorough attention to the various characters of light at different angles that truly set his windows apart and continues to inspire awe today!

Here at Stained Glass Austin, we make lovely stained glass in the style of Frank Lloyd Wright, paying attention to the clean lines and refraction of light.  If you want to learn more about Frank Lloyd Wright style stained glass windows for your Austin home, contact us today for a free design consultation!

Martin Faith is a talented artisan, businessman, and collector of rare and antique stained glass windows. After moving to the United States from Scotland, Martin opened up his own studio which produces custom, handmade stained glass. He and his team have produced over 50,000 stained and leaded glass windows for over 12,000 customers of various styles including Art Noveau, Art Deco, Mission, Prairie, Greene & Greene, contemporary, and beveled glass. Martin's areas of expertise range widely and include historic glass preservation, religious stained glass, and restoration. His work adorns the walls of homes, businesses, and churches all throughout the city of Austin and the surrounding area.

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