In 2015, we assisted artist Pilar Belmonte in the fabrication of a new stained glass window for the Cathedral of San Juan Bautista in Albacete, Spain. The radiant rose window is over 4 meters in diameter.
Belmonte’s design is highly symbolic, referencing the Holy Trinity and the body and blood of Jesus Christ. In addition to numerical symbols for the four evangelists and twelve apostles, the radiant glass chunks in the center of the window symbolize the twelve stars of the crown of the Virgin Mary de los Llanos, the patron saint of the cathedral and the town of Albacete. Furthermore, the spatial proximity to the organ inspired Belmonte to make some musical references, integrating the notes of the well-known melody of Schubert’s Ave Maria and the beginning of the hymn of the patron saint of the city into her design.
Pilar Belmonte drew her designs on true sized canvases, which she then brought to Taunusstein as references for our artisans. For the 16 exterior panels, she chose mouth-blown Lamberts glass in radiant colors. Each piece was cut by hand, hand painted and acid etched, and then fashioned into stained glass panels. It was the artists’s wish, to realize the center of the window without any lead lines. Therefore, our artisans used large peices of float glass, which were elaborately painted in several layers, tempered and in a final step, laminated with additional pieces of glass as well as chunks of mouth blown glass.