Frans Wesselman R.E. (stained glass)

After working for many years as a painter and etcher I saw, on a chance visit to Salisbury Cathedral, Gabriel Loire’s beautiful “Prisoners of Conscience” window, which, besides the graphic, story-telling aspects, had the most glorious colours. I decided to try my hand at this wonderful medium and, finding a certain ease in dealing with glass, have now completed many commissions while still exploring further possibilities.

I continue to be excited by all aspects of stained glass, love to study old windows but enjoy investigating modern developments just as much and find that what I learn in stained glass enriches my painting and etching and vice versa.


Story telling is for me an important function of visual art. It necessitates thinking through the motives, the lives, the emotions of the characters depicted, which I find in it self absorbing. Then one has to decide how these emotions and feelings are best expressed on the artist’s little two-dimensional stage so as to make the link with the viewer. So that, while sitting all alone in the studio, I am engaged with a whole world of people, animals, plants, weather.


In 2009 I was asked to do some thinking and drawing on an idea to make Lady Godiva walk from Coventry to London on the occasion of the Olympic Games. This has now grown into the “Godiva Awakes” project, which will set off from Coventry at the end of July 2012. In 2013 the six metre tall puppet of Godiva will get a permanent, purpose-built home in Coventry for which I have designed and made eight stained glass windows, depicting the history of Coventry from Godiva’s day until 2012, as well as some Godiva- equivalents from other cultures.

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