Towards the end of our day Barbara and I headed across from Dartington to nearby Buckfast Abbey. I have been there many times but have never visited the Abbey, or the chapel with its glorious stained glass, without hordes of people milling around and services and personal devotion in progress...it is what it is for after all, so to visit towards the end of a wet and drizzly day, as the place was about to close, proved to be a good move.
The Blessed Sacrament Chapel was empty so for the first time ever I felt able to take photographs..
Stunning isn't it, and even on a dull day, which this was, the light refracts through the glass beautifully, radiating a sense of well-deserved and very well-received glory. All made by the monks at Buckfast, and for the first time I was also able to see it in close up.
I was fascinated to read this about the construction of the windows...
In 1968 Dom Charles completed his most striking embellishment of the church the huge east window in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel. This employs the technique known as dalles-de-verre in which ‘tiles’ of coloured glass are chipped into shape and laid, mosaic-fashion, in a matrix of resin.
So, that is what I had always seen from a distance ...large chunky pieces of thick glass, chiselled and bevelled into shape, and then held together with resin rather than lead, creating a structure with the supporting strength of a wall.
It all reminded me of my dazzlingly bright Kaffe Fassett quilting project currently in progress at home.
Clearly the monks of Buckfast are the Kaffe Fassetts of the Benedictine world.