Workshops of stained glass – windows and Venetian mirrors.
Order Tour Code: C N2
For several centuries, the Czech Republic has been renowned as a world center for the production of high-quality glass and crystal.
Come with us to visit workshops outside Prague where Venetian mirrors and stained glass are produced.
5-8 HOUR ROUND TIP
Most of 24 glassmakers mentioned in Prague in the 14th century
were involved in the manifacture of windows ( stained-glass
panes , or fillers made of so-called glass „bull´s – eyes – crown
glass ) , as the widespread production of hollow glass directly in
Prague cannot be presupposed , albeit that it also cannot be
ruled out. These glassmakers are most often designated in
Latin as „vitreator“ , „vitrofex“ or „vitrista“ and less often using the
Czech word „sklenar“ or the German word „glazer“ . In most
cases , it is not possible to discover where they came from .
Some of glassmakers took part in the creation of the 85 square
metres mosaic of the Last Judgement on the Golden Gate of St.
Vitus Cathedral in 1370-1371. In 1348-1419 , 7 mirror makers
also worked in Prague .
In the 15th century the glass consumption continued to rise and
the primary glassmaking production in the border mountains
developed more quieckly. In the 16th century not only thin-walled
, blown glass beads , which were imported from Venice ( Italy ) ,
but also Venetian flat mirrors appeared in Prague. WE even
know the name of one Venetian mirror maker Rehor Rusek who
had a workshop in Prahue from about 1530 .
In about the 1670s – 1690s , Bohemian glassworks combined
the Venetian and traditional Central European technologies , in
order to give rise to a completely new type of glass melt –
Bohemian crystal , a hard , perfectly transparent glass imitating
rock crystal . This glass was an ideal material especially for
engraving , which found the new expression in it.
The leading work of the Prague glassmakers of the 18th century
was the lining of the mirror-Chapel in Clementinum completed
The Czech chandeliers with trimmings graced the halls of
Versailles , Marly and Choissy in France , Brussels and
elsewhere , they were admired also at the coronation of
Empress Maria Theresa in Prague in 1743 .
In the 19th century – glass adapted to the new life-style and ,
together with porcelain and pottery , it replaced pewter . Sets for
hot and cold drinks , various types of goblets , table services for
meal condiments , table accessories for food or flowers and so
on were common . New utility types of glass also appeared in
the form of various types of commercial packaging ( cosmetis,
alcoholic beverages and so on ) and medicinal or health care
glass . Glass was also more common in hostelry operations .
In the 18th century the local glassmakers sought other ways in
which to reassert themselves in the international market and
began to experiment with the new types of glass and refining
techniques. The first involved black and red hyalite and the
painting refining techniques of Friedrich Egermann from Novy
Bor (Haida) a yellow and red staining , lithyalines imitating
marble and semi-percious stones , and so on , which in their
artistic effect had much in common with the Empire style . The
wide pallet of new types of transparent coloured glass for hollow
and sheet glass was developed here .
In the end of the 19th century windows and door panels were
mounted with etched , cut , painted or stained-glass panes . Art
Nouveau and Modernism in architecture brought with them the
more complex use of glass in various forms and stained glass
and glass paintings in particular played a more significant role in
profone architecture . Mosaics which were often deisgned by
leading artists also found a new applications . There were
installed mosaics in st. Vitus Cathedral .An excellent example of
Art Nouveau work of the glassmaking and glazing workshops
are stained glass windows , mosaics , etched door and window
panels as well as the illumination of Obecni du?m ( Municipal
House ) dating from 1908-1912 .
At the end of 1950s , Stanislav Libensky and his wife Jaroslava
Brychtova achieved in their work the new expression of the
relationship between glass and architecture . The most famous
is the multi-coloured stained glass for the Chapel of Saint
Wenceslas in Saint Vitus´ Cathedral and the glass cladding of
the New Stage of the National Theatre .