Ann is a stained glass artist creating original works for churches, schools, hospitals, public buildings & private collections. Her work can be seen throughout Ireland & the UK as well as in the USA.

View selected works below - just hover over the boxes to get a little taste for the project & location, then click 'View the Gallery' to browse the photos.

My Blog

Nov 11
2016

Dulce et decorum est

img_0991This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Somme.

Watching various documentaries and reading some incredible poetry of the time I felt so moved and indeed horrified at what I saw and read that I wanted to create my own memorial in recognition of this horrific event.

Both my grandfathers fought at the Somme. Thankfully both returned home otherwise I and my family would not be here today.

The piece I have created is my own personal memorial to all those who lost their lives and to those who suffered the incredible mental scars of war.

My response to this event is expressed through colour, texture and symbolism.

A trench runs down the centre of the panel flanked by glass cabochons which hold fragments of sack cloth like reliquaries hold precious relics.

One hundred and forty one red glass globs pour out of the trench. One for each of the one hundred and forty one days of blood shed.

Embedded within this sea of red are five green glass globs symbolising sacrifice and eleven blue glass globs symbolising the end of the First World War on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. 

The background has been created by acid etching a green flashed antique glass to convey the idea of gas pouring into the trenches.

The stained glass panel is housed in a bespoke light box hand crafted in oak by local wood turner and furniture maker Mark Hanvey. 

I chose to use oak as this is a traditional symbol of strength and courage in adversity. 

The light box has handles down each side to show that this is something that can be carried rather than a memory or facts from a history book shut away and later forgotten. 

“If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues, –
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori”

Extract from “Dulce et decorum est” by Wilfred Owen.

 

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Jul 27
2012

Sunshine After the Rain

Ann Smyth Stained Glass / Follow Your Heart

Follow Your Heart

Working with the BBC on the Titanic Trails earlier this year to celebrate the craft of stained glass inspired me to create a collection of small hanging glass features to compliment my large scale architectural work .

I have called this collection “Sunshine After the Rain”.  This idea came about partly as a result of my own personal journey and partly as a result of discovering some fabulous crystals whilst on a trip to Vancouver.

Sourcing materials for this project has been a bit of a nightmare but I have finally got there and the resulting collection consists of three key pieces; “When it rains look for rainbows”, “When it’s dark look for stars” and “Follow your heart”.

I have used Swarovski crystals from Austria for all of these pieces. The crystals are laser cut then hand polished which gives them their incredible light refracting qualities enabling them to create fabulous “rainbow” reflections when the sun shines through them. I have one hanging in the window of my studio and in the afternoon when the sun shines it is like working inside a disco…. now I really am showing my age! Apart from looking really pretty I am convinced these crystals have “healing” properties as no matter how many times I see the light and rainbows dancing around my walls I never fail to be filled with delight and wonderment at this incredible phenomenon – must be the child in me!

I have combined these crystals with some beautiful French and German antique glass and some wonderful Spectrum glass from America. The pieces are put together using the copper foil technique perfected by Louis Comfort Tiffany at the end of the nineteenth century and are finished with a length of antiqued copper chain for hanging.

As well as hanging them in my window I have placed some of these pieces in the garden which works really well as they sparkle and glisten as they move in the breeze like beautiful garden jewels creating fabulous rainbow reflections on all the surrounding surfaces.

An old mentor of mine once described being a stained glass artist as “painting with light”. What a wonderful job this is!

 

Ann Smyth Stained Glass
32 Downpatrick Road
Strangford
County Down
BT30 7LZ

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