Artist/Studio: Burlison & Grylls, London, c.1910.
Location: Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.
Building: St David’s Cathedral, Hobart.
Memorial: N/A. Constructed as principal east window.
Photos dated: 7th October 2010.
“WINDOW FOR HOBART CATHEDRAL”
“Messrs. Burlison and Grylis [sic], ecclesiastical stained manufacturers, have completed the east window for the cathedral at Hobart. The window will be shipped within a few weeks.”
“ST. DAVID’S CATHEDRAL. THE EAST WINDOW.
(from our own correspondent)
LONDON, April 29.
“Thanks to the courtesy of Messrs. Burlison and Grylls, I was able to inspect the new east window for the Hobart Cathedral, which has just been completed, and will be shipped within a few weeks. The window is about 25 feet high and 16 feet wide, and is a fine example of ecclesiastical glass. In the principal lights are the figures of Christ on the cross, St. John and the Virgin. Below this are St. David, St. Augustine, and St. Paulinus, the two saints appearing as the Archbishops of Canterbury and York. St. David representing the see of Hobart, and, accordingly, holding a model of the completed cathedral in his hand. At the sides are the arms of the sees of Canterbury and of Tasmania. On either side of the window are St. Peter and St. Paul, the founders of the Church Catholic, St. Peter bearing his key, and St. Paul “the sword of the spirit.” In the top most light is Christ in glory. The window being intended for a cathedral of the perpendicular style, Mr. Bodley, the architect, and Mr. Grylls, senior, the designer, naturally determined upon a general scheme that would be in keeping with its architectural surroundings. The east window of St. David’s Cathedral, consequently, does not recall the windows seen in Gothic churches. The drawing suggests the period of Jan van Eyck, Mernline [sic?] and the great Flemish painters. There is the same rich yet sober colouring, and the same insistence upon character in the figure drawing. The suitability of the general design for a perpendicular building was the more apparent when Mr. Grylls compared it with a “rose window” upon which he is now at work for the north transept of the Brisbane Cathedral. That, I believe, is the work of Mr. F. E. Pearson, the architect, whos leanings were in the direction of the Romanesque style. Consequently Messrs. Burlison and Grylls have emphasised the early Gothic character of the glass both in respect of colour and design. The very figures have the beautiful uncouthness of drawing which we instinctively associate with early glass painting.
The “rose window” for Brisbane is based upon a most happy general scheme, which, by the way, recalls a famous “cantoria” by Luca della Robbia in Florence. In the centre are the Virgin, the Child-Christ, and St. Joseph. Around are certain saints, angels, and prophets – David, Isaiah, Micah, an angel, one of the magi, Anna, a shepherd, Simeon, and Elizabeth – the whole forming a pictorial illustration of the universal Te Deum. Each figure bears a tiny scroll with a text. It will be remembered that Luca della Robbia’s singing angels are also brought into a single harmony by the words from the 150th psalm – “Praise ye the Lord, Praise Him upon the loud cymbals.”