With Light: The Painters
many craftspeople in the Middle Ages, stained glass painters or
glaziers completed a 4 or 5 year apprenticeship at an early age
then undertook the role of journeyman.
unlike other medieval crafts - say, a stonecutter
who might have traveled alone with only his tool kit, glaziers
would travel within a studio under the direction of a master glazier.
traveling studio usually set up shop very near the cathedral building
site. Sometimes, more than one major studio took part at
the site, which is why in the 13th century (when demand was greatest)
several different techniques can be identified within a single
the studios traveled from job site to job site, they took sketches
and models. An early influence of the French illuminator's
art is seen in many windows of the era, with many of the largest
cathedrals in France stylistically similar to the Paris-Chartres
studios. The French didn't stop at the border, however. Their
hand can also be seen in the windows of Canterbury Cathedral,
the cathedral of Lausanne, Switzerland along with those in the
Spanish cathedral cities of Aragon, Toledo and Castille.
and Germany were relative latecomers in perfecting the craft,
although guild members were well paid and much respected. In a
prominent medieval stained glass center like Leicester, England,
senior members even held precedence over their local town government.
medieval craftsperson remained anonymous, except for names on
cathedral account ledgers. And aside from Laurence at the Abbey
at Westminster or Clemente of Chartres (who wrote his signature
on a window in Rouen) few works memorialize any one single individual.
fact, today we know more about their rich benefactors than the
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