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Stained Glass Work: William Richard Lethaby

Stained Glass Work:

William Richard Lethaby

Published March 1st 2005
ISBN : 9781929148479
Hardcover
384 pages
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 About the Book 

STAINED GLASS WORK - BY W. R. LETHABY - PREFACE - IN issuing these volumes of a series of Editors Handbooks on the Artistic Crafts, it will be well to state what are our general aims. In the first place, we wish to provide trustworthy text-books ofMoreSTAINED GLASS WORK - BY W. R. LETHABY - PREFACE - IN issuing these volumes of a series of Editors Handbooks on the Artistic Crafts, it will be well to state what are our general aims. In the first place, we wish to provide trustworthy text-books of workshop practice, from the points of view of experts who have critically examined the methods current in the shops, and putting aside vain survivals, are prepared to say what is good workmanship, and to set up a standard of quality in the crafts which are more especially associated with design. Secondly, in doing this, we hope to treat design itself as an essential part of good workmanship. During the last century most of the arts, save painting and sculpture of an academic kind, were little considered, and there was a tendency to look on design as a mere matter of appearance. Such ornamentation as there was was usually obtained by following in a mechanical way a drawing provided by an artist who often knew little of the technical processes involved in production. With the critical attention given to the crafts by Ruskin and Morris, it came to be seen that it was impossible to detach design from craft in this way, and that, in the widest sense, true design is an inseparable element of good quality, involving as it does the selection of good and suitable material, contrivance for special purpose, expert workmanship, proper finish, and so on, far more than mere ornament, and indeed, that ornamentation itself was rather an exuberance of fine workmanship than a matter of merely abstract lines. Workmanship when separated by too wide a gulf from fresh thought-that is, from design-inevitably decays, and, on the other hand, ornamentation, divorced from workmanship, is necessarily unreal, and quickly falls into affectation. Proer ornamentation mav be defined as a language addressed to thk eye it is pleasant thought expressed in the seech of the tool. 1 In the third place, we would have this series put artistic craftsmanship before Editors people as furnishing reasonable occupa- Preface tions for those who would gain a liveli- hood. Although within the bounds of academic art, the competition, of its kind, is so acute that only a very few per cent. can fairly hope to succeed as painters and sculptors yet, as artistic craftsmen, there is every probability that nearly every one who would pass through a sufficient period of apprenticeship to workman- ship and design would reach a measure of success. In the blending of handwork and thought in such arts as we propose to deal with, happy careers may be found as far removed from the dreary routine of hack labour as from the terrible un- certainty of academic art. It is desirable in every way that men of good education should be brought back into the produc- tive crafts there are more than enough of us in the city, and it is probable that more consideration will be given in this century than in the last touDesign and Workmanship. Our last volume dealt with one of the .. . Xlll Editors branches of sculpture, the present treats of Preface one of the chief forms of painting. Glass-painting has been, and is capable of again becoming, one of the most noble forms of Art...