Ray Gregory, Art Glass, Resplendent, stained glass, Norfolk, Virginia, Beth El Congregation, Chrysler Museum, Christ and St. Luke's, Capt. George's Seafood, Washington Hebrew Congregation, Annunciation Greek Orthodox

 

 

 

Stained Glass

Art Glass, Inc. made most of its stained glass windows using lead came and solder, the traditional way that first appeared over 1300 years ago. But even using modern wheeled glass cutters, light boxes, grozing pliers, electric soldering irons, and stock lead caming, the work, all done by hand, required much labor, patience, and skill. Now and then Art Glass would use the copper foil technique that Louis Comfort Tiffany's studios pioneered in making his famous stained glass lampshades. While most of its larger stained glass commissions were for religious congregations, Art Glass also served many restaurants and other businesses, military installations, and residences. Plus it did a hefty amount of stained glass restoration and repair work.

 

 

Simple hand tools of the trade

 

 

Religious Windows in Various Styles

The symbol laden windows of St. Aidan's Episcopal Church, though not very large as stained glass windows go, were probably my favorite church commission. They were likely my closest approach to the liturgical ideal of "teaching" stained glass. I met with the church's very dedicated window committee three times, for a total of nearly nine hours! But I found hashing out which symbols they wanted and didn't want quite enjoyable — even though my own recommendations didn't always prevail. It must have been the knowledge of the Bible and Christian symbolism I displayed that led St. Aidan's priest at the time to deduce that I was "a devout Christian steeped in the history of the Church..." (from the text of the church's window brochure), though actually it's my doubts about the prevailing doctrines of Christianity that I'm probably most devout about. But "steeped" seemed an appropriately worded tribute to my Norfolk Christian High School edumacation.

— Ray Gregory

St. Aidan's, Episcopal, stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk, Virginia Beach

St. Aidan's stained glass window brochure

St. Aidan's, Episcopal, stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk, Virginia Beach

 

St. Andrew's Lutheran, another wonderful church to work for. The congregation wanted stained glass for its sanctuary aisle windows, but also wanted to enjoy the sunlit exterior view, so there was this pleasing compromise solution:

St. Andrew's, Lutheran, stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk, Churchland, Portsmouth, Virginia

A couple of St. Andrew's entry windows

St. Andrew's, Lutheran, stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk, Churchland, Portsmouth, Virginia

 

Foundry UMC altar window (actually a large lightbox)

Foundry, UMC, stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Virginia Beach

 

St. Timothy, Lutheran, stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk, Virginia

 

St. Mark's Catholic

St. Mark's, Catholic, stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Virginia Beach

St. Mark's altar windows (scenes from the Gospel of Mark)

St. Andrew's, Lutheran, stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Churchland, Portsmouth, Virginia

 

 

 

 

Hindu Diwali (Festival of Lights)

 

 

Naval Security Group Chapel

Chesapeake, Virginia

Art Glass produced five baptismal windows for renowned architectural glass designer David Wilson:

Naval Security Group, Chapel, stained glass, Chesapeake, Virginia

Rendering Wilson's intellectual and highly rectilinear designs in glass demanded meticulous craftsmanship — all those lines had to line up!

Naval Security Group, Chapel, stained glass, Chesapeake, Virginia

 

Washington Hebrew Congregation

Washington, D.C.

Art Glas, Inc. also produced and installed the stained glass panels for the "Wall of Light" (approx. 75 feet wide) designed by David Wilson for the sanctuary of the largest synagogue in the nation's capital:

Washington Hebrew Congregation, stained glass

 

Naval Security Group, Chapel, stained glass, Chesapeake, Virginia

 

 

Glass Painting

Below, unpainted glass pieces lying on a light table and the finished painted and leaded-together stained glass panel. The vivid colors were mostly in the glass itself, with vitreous paints (blacks, grays, and browns) applied to add lines and shading effects, then baked onto the surface of the glass pieces in the kiln. But sometimes vitreous enamels were used to add colors. Glass stainers' paints are nasty stuff, containing all kinds of toxic heavy metals, but once fired onto the glass, they're trapped in the glass, no longer able to contaiminate the enironment. Each glass piece required from two to five (sometimes more) firings in the kiln to achieve the desired effect. Here the colors of tree trunk, flesh, rock, soil, and some of the flowers also came from the paints:

 

 

A Glass Painter's Lament

Isn't it best to let glass speak for itself, to let a stained glass window be its full glassy self and not some luminescent semblance of a painting on canvas? Glass painters call what they do "arresting the light on the surface of the glass," but it might also be called, especially when done to excess, a kind of travesty, an affront to the ideal of glass and light interacting.

But glass painting, which reached its peak of opacity in the nineteenth century, is now expected for the "traditional" look, especially in stained glass church windows. Of course, in those cases where glass is illuminated by a lightbox, painting doesn't crimp the nature of the glass any more than does the flat artificial light radiating from a translucent light diffuser behind it. Neither does painting significantly crimp the style of windows made mostly of opalescent glass, a milky glass you can't see things through, something else that became most prominent in the nineteenth century, especially in church windows.

— Ray Gregory

 

St. Theodore Chapel, Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral

Norfolk, Virginia

 

Naval Security Group, Chapel, stained glass, Chesapeake, Virginia

In the style of the old sanctuary windows

St. Theodore Chapel, Annunciation Greek Orthodox, stained glass, Norfolk, Virginia

 

Painted (but not yet leaded together) glass pieces for an Orthodox window in a monastery in Greece:

 

 

Entryway glass for St. Matthew's Catholic

St. Matthew's, Catholic, stained glass, Virginia Beach

 

Children's Hospital of the King's Daughters Chapel

Children's Hospital, King's Daughters, stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk, Virginia

 

Some church window maritime medallions

 

 

Assorted painted church windows

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk, Virginia

 

A veterans' mausoleum

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Replendent, Norfolk, Virginia

 

Mount Lebanon Baptist

These two went to Mt. Lebanon Baptist Church in Brooklyn, New York, the farthest north Art Glass ever went to install stained glass windows. Mt. Lebanon's preacher at the time hailed from the Hampton Roads area.

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, A Glass Resplendent, Norfolk, Mt. Lebanon Baptist, Brooklyn

Ray Gregory, stained glass

St. Aidan's Chapel

 

 

Craddock Presbyterian

 

 

King's Grant Presbyterian

King's Grant Presbyterian, Virginia Beach, stained glass

From King Grant's columbarium stained glass

 

 

St. Bride's Episcopal

 

 

Fourth Baptist, Portsmouth

Architect Spencer Scott, whose work I greatly admired, designed this window for Fourth Baptist Church. I think he said his father was or had been its preacher. You'd have to ask Spencer why two omegas and no alpha (I've forgotten).

— Ray Gregory

South Street Baptist, stained glass, Spencer Scott, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Portsmouth, Virginia

 

Piney Wood Chapel (Gates, North Carolina)

 

 

 

 

New Mount Olivet Baptist

 

 

Ocean View Presbyterian

Ocean View Presbyterian, stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk, Virginia

 

 

 

St. James United Methodist

 

 

St. Mark's Chapel

 

 

Virgin and Child stained glass panel I made for my wife who's of Greek extraction and was raised in the Greek Orthodox tradition. The design came from an old Orthodox icon, but I tweeked some of the details, including making the child a little more childlike (plumper and proportionately larger head), instead of the typical homunculus (small adult) look found in the old icons.

— Ray Gregory

Ray Gregory, Orthodox, Virgin, Child, stained glass

 

Not So Religious Work

 

With apologies to one old Greek god, a 17-feet-tall window for Capt. George's restaurant in Pungo

Capt. George's Seafood, stained glass, Neptune, mermaid, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

Funny story:  Jack Macione of Forth Dimension Design called to tell me they wanted stained glass for the large tower window at Capt. George's new restaurant in Pungo (in the nether regions of Virginia Beach), which was soon to open. Jack said he wanted to see Neptune with a mermaid on his lap, and he added he wanted the mermaid to have "big bare breasts." Well, okay, Jack. So when I took him a design sketch, which conformed to all his specifications, the old salt readily approved it. But once the brazen stained glass scene was installed, Jack called me back. The restaurant had gotten complaints from some of its customers, he said. He asked what it would cost to "put a bra on the mermaid." Seriously? I thought, since the big stained glass domes we'd already made for Capt. George's each had a topless mermaid too. I explained to Jack that stained glass bras weren't that cheap considering that we'd have to set up the scaffolding again and take down all three panels of the upper half of the window just to get to the offending anatomical part — er, parts. After that, I heard no more about the problem appendages. Who, I had to wonder, goes to a Capt. George's and worries about a topless mermaid overhead when there's all that sumptuous food to ogle and drool over at the buffet? After the Pungo restaurant closed, I heard that the Neptune-and-mermaid glass had been transfered down to Capt. George's in Myrtle Beach. Maybe the customers down there weren't as prudish.

— Ray Gregory

 

Capt. George's Crazy-Big Domes

In the main dining areas of Capt. George's Seafood Restaurant on Laskin Road in Virginia Beach, two 34-feet diameter domes (the "sky" and "map" designs started with a couple of dinner plate-size sketches)

 

 

 

 

Capt. George's, Seafood, stained glass, domes, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk, Virginia Beach

Lots more for Capt. George's

Capt. George's Seafood, stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk, Virginia Beach

 

 

A sweets shop that used to be in Ghent

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

A lounge that used to be in the basement of the Madison Hotel

 

 

 

A pool room at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard

Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, stained glass, Norfolk Naval Shipyard

 

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

A sci-fi phase

Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, stained glass, Norfolk

 

 

 

A flying car, the ultimate sci-fi dream?

 

 

"ARG" monogram, which Ray Gregory marked some of his work with, here the focus of a stained glass attic window of the Tidewater Drive building Art Glass once occupied:

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

Residential Work

One of Art Glass' first residential jobs was stained glass for the kitchen windows of the delightfully cluttered Victorian mansion of John and Rose Parker in the Ghent neighborhood of Norfolk.

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

Something for a more contemporary Ghent residence

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

This one was modeled after a Persian rug, for an interior designers' show that was staged in the Victorian-era Hunter House in the Freemason neighborhood of Norfolk in the early 1980s. Years later it lives in the Palladian window of a retro house, though with a more modern interior.

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

Cabinet door lights made to match the wall paper pattern

(these went to a home in Boston)

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

 

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

 

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

 

 

 

Ray Gregory,

 

stained gl

ass

 

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

An addressed transom

 

 

Fireplace screen

 

 

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

While 99% or more of the windows were made with lead came, occasionally a piece was made with the copper foil technique (traditionally used to make stained glass lampshades)

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

Art Glass, Inc. also made and installed the handsome oak lightbox for this large copper foil work for a beach house in Virginia Beach (with a depiction of the house in the glass)

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

A sunroom, with Art Glass also doing the window framing and cladding it with verdigrised copper, as well as making and installing the leaded glass (commissioned by Thomas and Geraldine Nicholson for their remarkable "chateau" in the Algonguin section of Norfolk, where they graciously made Art Glass' workers feel right at home)

 

 

Painted window gift for a beach neighbor:

 

 

 

 

Tarot Cards

Everyone has an idea what the Hierophant's alpha and omega mean, but the B and J of the High Priestess? They're for Boaz and Jachin, the names the Bible gives the black and white pillars at the entrance to the Temple of Solomon.

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

A layered-panel beach scene

Stained glass, Ray Gregory, Art Glass Resplendent, Norfolk

 

Acouple of Ray Gregory's early hobby pieces

 

 

 

Back to Home Page

 

 

hent, Hague, No