"spirit in glass"
Sri Yantra - picture © Mark Brittain 2009
This page will tell you about Mark's work with stained glass and show examples of the repair work he has been doing and show some of the stained glass panels and hanging mandalas he has designed and created for our home, our business and for sale. You can also link to our "crystal sales" website, which has a shopping basket and PayPal facility if you wish to purchase any items.
Initially, Mark decided to follow a programme of study and learn the craft of working with glass, primarily with leaded panels, as a means to learning how to repair some of the windows in our home, some of which were broken or needed re-leading, and to re-create stained glass panels to put into our front door. He is now a fully qualified Stained Glass artisan.
The original panels had been removed at some stage (goodness knows why!) and we had no idea what the original design of them would have been, however Mark created a new design based around the pattern of the top-lights in our bay windows, and the pattern of the one-off panel on our hallway landing, to create a new design that remained in character with the rest of the stained glass in the house. In the process, he rediscovered an old skill (recalling a previous lifetime as a stained glass artisan working on the magnificent windows of Chartres Cathedral) and found a creative side that he enjoys and finds relaxing and that enhances the rest of the work he does.
As his course progressed, Mark found he was drawn to work with designs that are inspired by the work we do and which have a spiritual nature, and that can incorporate natural materials such as minerals and crystals in their design. Some work is very simple; some work is basic repair work, which is very rewarding as you bring an old piece back to life; some work is on commission, which may mean designing something from scratch; and some work is inspired by the topics we encounter in our own spiritual life and work (Hilary always has new ideas that she would like to see rendered in glass!)
ABOVE: you can see a restoration project of a water-lily panel, which is now hanging in a friend's home. Some of the original glass has been reused, some new pieces have been used to add more colour and details. All the lead work needed to be replaced.
One of the amazing things about working with glass is its power and potential to channel colour and Light. Many of the pieces Mark creates can be used for meditation or contemplation, as well as enhancing ones surroundings, indoors or outside.
Many panels are by design quite large, and do look especially good when hanging in natural surroundings (SEE ABOVE). This is quite possible, as all leaded panels are made to be rainproof, although it is necessary to ensure that if hung outside they are well supported by strong hanging chains or a custom-made frame and that they cannot be buffeted too much by strong winds.
Here are some other examples of the panels that Mark has completed:
Cross in Light © Mark Brittain 2007
ABOVE: This 18x12" panel was made as a gift for a 70th birthday
The Four Elements © Mark Brittain 2008
ABOVE: This panel is Tiffany work, connected with leaded surround for hanging. It depicts the four elements: earth, air, water and fire. When the Sun shines through the piece it is wonderful to see the coloured light reflected onto the walls, showing every detail and line within the glass that has been used.
Merkaba - picture © Mark Brittain 2009
ABOVE: It is also possible to do work in 3D - here is an experimental piece made of clear glass, showing a small merkaba star, which is hanging in the garden.
Trinity of the Druids - Picture and photos © Mark Brittain 2009
ABOVE (LEFT): This is one of my favourite pieces. It was inspired by our visit to Bryn Myrddin (Merlin's Hill) near Carmarthen in Wales, (RIGHT) which is said to be a "Shamballa Gateway". This is a fantastic "out-of this world" (literally!) place, very evocative and fey. Whilst there I was given a verse, and knew it was to be represented in glass, and framed with pieces of natural wood and vines that we were to collect from the area around us. Sure enough, the elementals showed us what we needed to collect, and on our return home we found the shape and design we needed to use for the piece, and this became a quite intricate and special project. I always associate Merlin with Druidic energies, and this is reflected in the verse, which goes as follows:
Elder, oak and holly, three
Bound with ivy, sacred be.
Sow and oxen; ram and sheep:
Life's bright circle we do keep.
BELOW: Here is a piece designed and made in Tiffany work with leaded surround for a special birthday, for someone who has "rooster" as a power animal.
Cockerel - © Mark Brittain 2009
BELOW: This extra-large Sri Yantra panel in black, white and clear glass is one of Mark's most ambitious projects. It took many days work to complete and quite a bit of sweat and tears to cut and shape some of the more complex bits!
Sri Yantra - © Mark Brittain 2009
This piece is for sale at £450.
Currently Mark is working on a large panel incorporating a slice of natural agate, themed "Buddha of the Orange Ray", and is planning another ambitious project based on the Kabbalistic Tree of Life and a large Lotus / Star of David mandala. Once complete, they will be shown here...
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