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Peacock Stained Glass.....c. 1890... The American artist LOUIS COMFORT TIFFANY…
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Peacock Stained Glass Doors circa 1890 by the American artist Louis Comfort Tiffany.

Second Presbyterian Church of Chicago | Louis C. Tiffany, Pastoral Window
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Chicago's Louis Comfort Tiffany Pastoral window at Presbyterian in Chicago

A View of Oyster Bay: 1908 by Louis Comfort Tiffany (The Met, NYC)
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The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Stained Glass, Oyster Bay, NYC, Louis Comfort Tiffany

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Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848-1933). Vase. 1915. Favrile glass. Musée d'Orsay - Paris - France
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Louis Comfort Tiffany stained glass window, circa 1920 * I love how it has created a view of a fa.

Agnes F. Northrop, Autumn Landscape, manufactured by Tiffany Studios, 1923-24. Leaded Favrile glass - Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC
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Louis Comfort Tiffany – "Autumn Landscape" Leaded Favrile-glass window New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Art

"PARAKEETS and GOLD FISH BOWL", c. 1893 Louis Comfort Tiffany, (1848-1933)

Parakeets and Gold Fish Bowl, 1893

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Parakeets and Gold Fish Bowl, 1893 Gicléedruk van Louis Comfort Tiffany bij AllPosters.

The Lamps of Louis Comfort Tiffany. Leaded glass, stained glass, floral, Wisterie flowers.
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architect design™: The Lamps of Louis Comfort Tiffany

Louis Comfort Tiffany signed stained glass, in the Church of the Holy Innocents, Highland Falls, New York. A gift in memoriam to J. P. Morgan, by his daughter Louisa Morgan Satterlee, c.1922. J.P. Morgan had been a member of the church. The Tiffany window depicts Great Head on Mount Desert Island, Acadia Nat'l Park. "O all ye works of the Lord, bless ye the Lord: praise him and magnify him forever." (Book of Common Prayer, c.1662). ~~ {cwl} ~ (Image: Acadia Memorials)
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Louis Comfort Tiffany signed stained glass, in the Church of the Holy Innocents…

Tiffany Spring-Spring. This is a Tiffany glass leaded window from the Met. the caption said it was a painting, it's not. I've seen it many times irl.
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Tiffany Spring-Spring - a Tiffany glass leaded window from the Met.

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Louis Tiffany: The Epitome of Beautiful Windows and Lamps | The Quark In The Road
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Blue wisteria lamp, love the wisteria lamp! Designed by Clara Driscoll and made by the women working for Tiffany!

Louis Comfort Tiffany, River of Life window, early 20th Century, leaded glass More
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Louis Comfort Tiffany - River of Life window, early Century, leaded glass. made of Favrile glass, copper foil and lead,

Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848—1933) was an American artist and designer who worked in the decorative arts and is best known for his work in stained glass. He is the American artist most associated with the Art Nouveau and Aesthetic movements. Tiffany designed stained glass windows and lamps, glass mosaics, blown glass, ceramics, jewelry enamels and metalwork.
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Daytonian in Manhattan: The Lost Louis Comfort Tiffany Mansion -- 898 Madison Avenue

Louis Comfort Tiffany — Detail of Apple Blossom and Magnolia Bloom by Remedy from the norm, via Flickr
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Louis Comfort Tiffany — Detail of Apple Blossom and Magnolia Bloom by Remedy from the norm.

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Louis Comfort Tiffany - “Dragonfly” Lampe (1902)
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Art Nouveau Dragonfly Lamp by Louis Comfort Tiffany 1902

Hibiscus and Parrots Louis Comfort Tiffany, 1910-1920 The Metropolitan Museum of Art
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‘Hibiscus and Parrots’ (circa Leaded Favrile glass designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany for Tiffany Studios Image and text courtesy The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

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The Life of Louis Comfort Tiffany: From Painter to Decorator

Born on February 18, 1848 Louis Comfort Tiffany would become a master of his craft. Throughout his lifetime, the US Civil War occurred, the Victorian era and Industrial Revolution of America came and went, and many inventions were created that completely changed the standards of living. Despite the wars and quarrels, Tiffany lived through a relatively progressive era of America. As a child, his parents, Charles Lewis Tiffany (the founder of Tiffany & Co.) and Harriet Tiffany, sent him to the Pennsylvania Military Academy and later the Eagleswood Military Academy. After his graduation he declined the opportunity to go to college in order to start his journey as a professional artist.

"The Old and New Mosques, Ali Hassimin and Sultan El Carmel, Cairo" by Louis Tiffany Comfort (1876)

“The Old and New Mosques, Ali Hassimin and Sultan El Carmel, Cairo” by Louis Tiffany Comfort (1873). Image from: “The Art Glass of Louis Comfort Tiffany” by Paul Doros

Before Tiffany was a genius decorator, he was a painter. At the same time, many artistic movements were ebbing and flowing such as the Arts and Crafts Movement, Aesthetic Movement, Art Nouveau, and many more. As a painter, he studied with the greats such as the landscape artist George Inness and Samuel Colman; Tiffany also took classes for drawing at the National Academy of Design located in New York. By 1867, he was beginning to exhibit his work at the National Academy. In 1868, Tiffany traveled around the world to places such as North Africa, Spain, and Paris. In Paris, he continued his studies with Léon-Charles Adrien Bailly; and met the French artist Léon- Adolphe-Auguste Belly. By having the means to travel the world, his artistic tastes would be greatly influenced by various cultures and atmospheres.

When Tiffany returned to America, he adopted the American Orientalist style¹, his paintings differed from other artists that were also working in this style. Like the painters Peter Paul Rubens and Claude Lorrain who were prominent during the Baroque period (period of art reflecting religious opinions between the 1600’s and 1700’s), what most inspired Tiffany was color and light. In an address to the Rembrandt Club of Brooklyn, he made his opinions vocal:

“When I first had a chance to travel in the east and to paint where the people and the building are clad in beautiful hues, the pre-eminence of color in the world was brought forcibly to my attention.”

These passions would later inspire his fervent experimentation for new stained glass window techniques.

In 1870, Tiffany was elected to the Century Club which at the time was filled with the hustle and bustle that came with being the center of culture in New York. At the time, Tiffany was the youngest member and due to this organization Tiffany would gain connections such as President Chester Arthur who would later commission him to decorate the White House.

"The Grand Illumination" by Peter Waddell (oil on canvas)

“The Grand Illumination” by Peter Waddell (oil on canvas)

As an elected associate, Tiffany continued his membership with the National Academy. Ironically enough, even though he continued his membership, he was part of a rival group that sought to rebel against the selection policies for exhibitions of the National Academy. This was called the Society of American Artists. Also around this time Tiffany’s career in decorative arts began.

In 1875, Tiffany began to experiment with glass making techniques; he knew that “the fragility of glass does not interfere with a great capacity for beauty on its part.” He was bored with the techniques being used at the time, calling them too cold and too formal. Tiffany wanted to mimic and even transcend the skills of Medieval stained glass producers. His understanding was that when glass was refined with the metal oxides removed, it made the glass “uninteresting.” Glass makers would later use metallic oxides to develop a variety of colors for Tiffany glass.

In 1892, he established the Tiffany Glass & Decorating Company. In his studio, he had many artists at work and was not always directly affiliated with the creation of pieces, he did oversee each stage of production. A year later he would begin to become an internationally renowned artist, his pieces displayed in the World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893. In 1902, the year of his father’s death, he would become the co-director of the Art Department in Tiffany & Company. Tiffany would later retire at age 71 and establish the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation at Laurelton Hall. His goal was to steer artists towards a different path, away from the contemporary movements that young artists were experimenting with, on such as modernism. He would live out the rest of his life with this uneasiness towards Contemporary art. On January 17, 1933, Louis Comfort Tiffany died. Tiffany’s effects on the art world were prominent; his works put America on the map and his glass techniques revolutionized the world of stained glass.

Footnotes:

¹ The American Orientalist movement was inspired by areas in the Middle East, Greece and North Africa. This included genre paintings (paintings displaying domestic life), propaganda pieces (in support of French Imperialism), and the popular depiction of harems (section of household reserved for women).

Citation:

Doros, Paul E. The Art Glass of Louis Comfort Tiffany.

Frelinghuysen, Alice C. “Louis Comfort Tiffany at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.” Yale University Press. Accessed April 20,          2015. http://yalepress.yale.edu/book.asp?isbn=9780300200058.

Tiffany, Louis C. “Color and Its Kinship to Sound.” The Art World 2, no. 2 (May 01, 1917): 142-43. Accessed April 20, 2015.      http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2307/25587902?ref=no-x-route:2f8fe02b362c6148849da435bb241c04.

Tiffany, Louis Comfort, and Rosalind M. Pepall. Tiffany: Color and Light. Montreal: Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, 2009.

Turner, Jane. The Dictionary of Art. New York: Grove, 1996.

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Exploring Tiffany Windows.

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Age of Industrial RevolutionExploring Art MovementsThe Life of Louis Comfort TiffanyThe Glass used in Christ Resurrection WindowUncovering the Layer BetweenHow Glass is MadeInterview with a ConservatorDIY Stained GlassTiffany Window:Glossary
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