Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Harry Harvey stained glass

click photo to enlarge
When I lived in East Yorkshire it was my delight, when visiting churches, to come upon stained glass by one or other of the two Harrys - Harry Stammers and Harry Harvey. The former was twenty years the senior, and had worked for Powell & Sons, then Wippells in Exeter, before establishing his own studio in York where he did many windows for the churches of the diocese. The styles of the two artists had certain similarities but they were quite unlike most of their contemporaries, producing work that was modern in appearance (and often subject) but still deeply grounded in the traditions of English glass making.

Harry Harvey was born in 1922 and began his career in stained glass with the Birmingham firm of Pearce & Cutler. After serving in the navy during the Second World War he worked for Wippells. Then, in 1947, at the invitation of Harry Stammers, he moved to York to become his assistant, a position he held for nine years. In 1957 he opened his own studio in York and worked in the county until his retirement in 1987. Harry Harvey he designed stained glass for about seventy Yorkshire churches, medieval and modern, including those of the architect G. G. Pace. He also did work for about sixty other churches throughout England. The church of St Mary and St Nicolas at Spalding has two of his stained glass windows, both dating from 1966.

I like the example above, one of the Spalding windows, for its characteristic clear, angular drawing, mixture of modern and traditional subjects and fine use of colour. The locality's secular side is represented by workers picking tulips and gathering potatoes. The communion scene at the bottom is all the better for showing the fashions of the day, and the religious subjects are handled in a typically direct and bold manner.

photograph and text © Tony Boughen

Camera: Sony RX100
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 37.1mm (100mm - 35mm equiv.)
F No: 5
Shutter Speed: 1/250
ISO: 125
Exposure Compensation:  -1.0 EV
Image Stabilisation: On