Jane Gray (b.1931)
Stained Glass Window Design, St Mary’s Church, Twickenham (1960)
41 x 37 cm
Signed and dated l.r.
This stained glass window design is one of a handful Gray designed for her local church, St Mary’s Twickenham. St Mary’s Church stands on the site of an earlier church in Twickenham, a short distance from York House and the banks of the River Thames, and incorporates a 15th-century, medieval tower. St Mary’s has an impressive and illustrious history of notable parishioners including the painter Godfrey Kneller who, after the collapse of the ancient church’s 14th-century nave in 1714, took active involvement in redesigning the church in the Neo-classical style alongside local architect John James, as well as Henry Fielding and Alfred Lord Tennyson whose sons were both baptised here. Gray had a personal connection to St Mary’s, her great grandfather having been the vicar some years before. This design, in particular, commemorates the benedictine monastery at the mouth of the Somme River: the Abbey of Saint Valery-sur-Somme. The imagery focusses on the repeated motif of the heraldic and highly symbolic fleur-de-lis, set against a sky blue background, the central shield containing the head of an ornate, gilt shepherd’s crook; a religious symbol of care, particularly in difficult circumstances.
Provenance: the artist’s studio sale.
Condition: very good.
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