Sainthood in stained glass: Jasmine Allen, the Director of the Stained Glass Museum in Ely Cathedral, describes a major new artwork for the collection and the steps taken to acquire it.

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Author: Jasmine Allen
Date: Autumn 2021
From: Art and Christianity(Issue 107)
Publisher: ACE Trust
Document Type: Article
Length: 751 words
Lexile Measure: 1630L

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The Stained Glass Museum has recently acquired a major contemporary work by celebrated American artist Kehinde Wiley (b.1977). Wiley is well-known for his artworks that place portraits of black men and women from around the world in traditional poses and settings of original historical, religious or mythological artworks. In 2017 Wiley was artist of choice to paint the official portrait of Barack Obama, the 44th President of the United States, for the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery, Washington DC (2018).

Although Wiley is best known for his paintings on canvas, he has also ventured into sculptural works, panel paintings (which resemble icons) and stained glass in recent years. Many of these works have religious themes and connotations. Saint Adelaide, 2014 is a striking larger-than-life stained glass portrait of a young black man standing proud within a gothic frame. The artwork measures over 2.5m high and 1m wide and was made by specialist stained glass artisans in the Czech Republic who, using traditional techniques, translated the artist's designs into a painted and leaded coloured glass window, thus continuing a long tradition of collaborations between celebrated artist-painters and stained glass...

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A676632981