. . . in Stained Glass Art

Impressionism in stained glass!Impressionism in stained glass!

"Iris Bouquet" (w.i.p., after Van Gogh)

Light Romance Studios --
foremost creators of stained glass Impressionist artworks!

You may well ask, how is Impressionism defined, and how can Impressionist painting technique be applied in stained glass art?  These were questions posed by Nasrene MacDonald soon after she founded Light Romance Art Glass Studios at her island summer cottage in Ontario.  Years earlier, she had learned painterly art at the prestigious Chelsea Art School in London, after which she excelled at oil painting in the style of the Old Masters, and in quintessentially Impressionist pastel renderings of nature.

"Merely think, here is a little square of blue, here an oblong of pink, here a streak of yellow, and paint it just as it looks to you." -- Claude Monet

Stained glass Impressionist renderings of splendid nature!
"Shades of the Wasatch"

And so, striving for originality as she brought her personal artistry to bear with art glass, Nasrene naturally gravitated towards Impressionism -- the most timeless and universally beloved of all art movements.  She realized that the essence of Impressionist paintings consisted in their breaking away from traditional rules of technique, composition, and style; and so she knew she must somehow do the same with stained glass art.  The heavy lead or solder lines that make traditional stained glass art in essence a colored line drawing had to be abandoned.

"Only when he no longer knows what he is doing does the painter do good things." -- Edgar Degas

The Impressionists, as Nasrene knew, used rapid, abrupt brushstrokes that allow the viewer to clearly see the traces of the brush, giving Impressionist paintings an "unfinished" appearance.  She knew that Impressionism captured the effects of light and shadow in a unique way.  And she knew that the Impressionists used juxtaposed vibrant colors to give their paintings luminosity.  Bright, contrasting colors were put onto the canvas one next to the other, often without prior mixing or subsequent blending.  That was Impressionism.  But how, then, to achieve Impressionism with art glass?

"I grasped what painting was capable of being.” -- Claude Monet

She found the answer in the little-known and still-neglected technique called stained glass appliqué.  Here there is no lead, no solder, nothing to keep the bright "brush strokes in glass" apart -- and so, the "line drawing" of traditional stained glass is transcended.  Carefully selected and shaped art glass pieces are bonded to a clear glass backing sheet, and such seams as there are between pieces -- most vanishingly small, but some judiciously left open for effect of shadow -- are filled with grout, as in mosaics, but without the visual limitations of a "little squares" approach, and gloriously translucent for display in a window or wall-mounted light-box.  The result, at the hands of a true artist, is resplendent stained glass Impressionism!

Now Nasrene creates diverse Impressionist stained glass artworks ranging from still-lifes to portraiture.  Even the studio name, Light Romance, proclaims the essence of Impressionism!

And here are more examples of her art:

The tradition of van Gogh in contemporary stained glass Impressionist art

In her "Coneflower" Nasrene succeeds with powerful effect in mimicking with art glass the clipped brushstrokes and visual impact of unmitigated strong colors employed famously by Van Gogh.  This commissioned artwork, now in a private collection, is one of Nasrene's personal favorites.
The light romance of stained glass Impressionism
"Van Gogh's Irises"

Just as the Impressionist painters used visibly broken brushwork and contrasts of juxtapositioned colors to suggest the varied textures of the scene, in her rendering of Van Gogh's "Irises" Nasrene uses appliqué technique with masterly effect, capturing what Monet called "the most fugitive effects" of light and color.

Click here to see Van Gogh's "Irises" rendered large for a New York wine cellar.

A bit of irony: As Nasrene learned belatedly, Van Gogh wrote in 1888, "I want to manage to get colours into [my art] like stained glass windows, and a good, bold design." And so, Vincent Van Gogh in his painting built upon and transcended what was possible in the stained glass art of his day, and now, more than a century later, Nasrene MacDonald builds upon that transcendence in her own new transcendence in stained glass art. Inspiration from stained glass in Impressionist painting, and new inspiration from Impressionist painting in Impressionist stained glass art!

Capturing fleeting images of Nature in stained glass Impressionism
"Cedar Waxwing" (w.i.p.)

The sense of heightened color and light that is the hallmark of the classic Impressionist paintings is captured in this rendering of a migrating bird, nervously paused in blooming shrubbery, shown here as a work in progress.  The feeling of "immediacy" -- towards which the Impressionist painters constantly strove -- is very strong in this artwork.  Nasrene "paints" in glass, by eye.

“There is only one important thing … Put down what you see the first time."  -- Edouard Manet

Impressions of Classic Impressionism!
Van Gogh's "Wheat Field with Crows"

This custom rendering in four panels of part of Van Gogh's last painting illustrates how stained glass Impressionism can enhance a home's atmosphere, splendidly reflecting personal tastes and interests. Original Impressionist appliqué art -- perfect for resplendent light-box display on interior walls, or in your wine cellar!
Impressionism in stained glass art!

Impressionism in stained glass!

Van Gogh's "Village Street in Auvers"

Impressionism in stained glass!Cactus stained glass detail

"Desert Lights"

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Please click on these links to view more of Nasrene's Impressionist stained glass art:

"Redwood Grove"

Van Gogh's "Valley with Ploughman"

Wonderful Impressionist effects in stained glass!
"A Pheasant's Flight"

"Blue Hyacinth Macaws"


Stained glass appliqué that suggests a fresco painted in an Oriental style.  Can you find all three birds?

"Japanese Maple"


"Hopi, 1901"

"Panhandle Posey"

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Four Seasons come to life in stained glass!

Nasrene MacDonald practices Impressionist, Tiffany copperfoil, and peinture à verre stained glass art at her summer home studio on Lake Opinicon, Ontario, and at various winter venues.  She is pleased to undertake commissioned artworks as the demands of her ongoing work allow.

All designs copyright Light Romance 1998-2013. Insured shipping additional.
E-mail now for friendly information without obligation:
Phone: 573-287-3233 (Nov-Apr) / 613-359-5406 (May-Oct)

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