Exploring different types of stained glass
A WINDOW INTO COVENTRY
Outreach project in Foleshill, Coventry
In March 2022 the museum delivered a successful trial outreach project in Coventry in partnership with local stained glass artist Jamal Rafay and community group Foleshill Creates, a group that brings together people from the Foleshill area through art and creativity, and encourages community cohesion, sharing skills, stories and knowledge.
Foleshill Creates facilitates access to arts for people who may have come across barriers, challenges or felt excluded from arts participation. The 'A Window into Coventry' project saw 12 local participants attend a series of four workshops, each exploring different aspects of stained glass with a particular focus on gaining new knowledge, skills and strengthening connections to local heritage. The first workshop was led by The Stained Glass Museum’s Curator and introduced participants to a wide variety of stained glass.
In the second and fourth workshops participants learned the techniques of glass cutting and glass painting with experienced glass artist and teacher Jamal Rafay, a former glass painter at Hardman & Co., who today runs his own stained glass studio in Oldham, Birmingham. Having learned more about the practical art, on the third workshop participants visited Coventry Cathedral to see up-close examples of medieval and modern stained glass, and created their own artworks in response.
In the final workshop participants received fired examples of their very own painted glass artworks and unveiled a collaborative stained glass panel inspired by medieval fragments of Coventry Cathedral’s old glass. Each participant contributed 1-2 pieces of painted glass to this panel, which was assembled by Jamal in his workshop. Participants responses to the finished piece were overwhelmingly positive, and we are pleased that the collaborative panel will go on permanent display in Foleshill Library later this year.
This project was funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and took place during Coventry’s year of City of Culture and provided an opportunity for The Stained Glass Museum to highlight the significance of the city’s stained glass heritage, both medieval and modern, to encourage creativity deepen the local community’s connections to this art form and local heritage.
The Stained Glass Museum is grateful to all the participants of this project for bringing their creative skills and enthusiasm to learn new stained glass skills. It is especially grateful too to partners Foleshill Creates, artist Jamal Rafay and evaluator Laura Owen.