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Stained Glassworlds: Stained Glass at the International Exhibitions 1851-1900

Allen, Jasmine (2013) Stained Glassworlds: Stained Glass at the International Exhibitions 1851-1900. PhD thesis, University of York.

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Studies of nineteenth-century stained glass are sparse, and tend to focus on the medium in its ecclesiastical and architectural settings. This thesis broadens such approaches by placing stained glass in its wider cultural, political, economic and global contexts by considering its display at ten international exhibitions held in England, France, the USA and Australia between 1851 and 1900. These temporary exhibitions provide a unique vantage point from which to survey the perception, practice, and status of stained glass during the peak of the medium’s revival. Drawing on contemporaneous written and visual sources, as well as recent studies of nineteenth-century culture, this study explores the extent to which the international displays of stained glass at these exhibitions shaped and developed the appreciation, application, understanding and permeation of stained glass throughout the nineteenth-century. This thesis demonstrates how the classification and various modes of displaying stained glass impacted future perceptions and displays of the medium. It considers the ways in which stained glass was part of a broader culture of spectacle in this period. It identifies those who made and exhibited stained glass for display at the international exhibitions, revealing their motives for participating and additional roles as reviewers and judges of exhibits. This project reveals, for the first time, the significance of the international exhibitions in the history of stained glass. It draws on nineteenth-century critical reviews, visual records and exhibits (both extant and non-extant) and offers close readings of specific stained glass exhibits, which are analysed in relation to stylistic developments, and to medieval and modern glazing techniques. Finally, the thesis demonstrates how stained glass was a symbolic and iconographic vehicle for expressions of nationalism and imperialism at these international events. By considering the presence of stained glass in the international exhibition environments, this thesis suggests the medium is a crucial and neglected aspect of nineteenth-century modernity.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: stained glass, International Exhibition, spectacle, glass, modernity, visual culture, nineteenth century
Academic Units: The University of York > History of Art (York)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.572418
Depositing User: Ms Jasmine Allen
Date Deposited: 29 May 2013 13:51
Last Modified: 24 Jul 2018 15:20
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/3991

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