Friday, March 31, 2023

Front Cover – The Angels Crucible

This design by Rachel Thomas for a stained glass window in St. Paul’s Church in the Birmingham Jewellery Quarter, was a winning entry in the Stevens Competition 1999.

It incorporates the hallmarking symbols for the Birmingham Assay Office, gold, silver and platinum, and the special mark commemorating the Millennium.

‘The pouring of molten metal from the crucible can be seen as a metaphor that reflects the area’s rich industrial history, diversity of skills, and cultural melting pot, where ideas become reality.

I also see the crucible to be a positive image, as though it is a portal towards a bright future and a new millennium. It can also be seen to portray wisdom, and the extract from the book of Job I feel summarises this chapter of the Bible.

The heat of the crucible is reflected in the bodies of the angels, who are carefully pouring the metal into the streets of the Jewellery Quarter below. The design of the haloes is based on the silver basket dated 1788 manufactured by Matthew Boulton, The patterns and trim on the clothing of the angels are based on details of other items by Boulton’. (Rachel Thomas.).

The window was unveiled in February 2000, and was donated by the Birmingham Assay Office.

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