Sunday, March 27, 2011

2004 Hearts, Hands and Homes of Bangor

            This stained glass mosaic was designed with Bangor Middle School Eighth graders in 2004 as an exploration and synthesis of their community's heritage and values. Known as the "Slate Belt" we incorporated "slate roofs" over the yellow doorways of the "houses". The students chose to make the "roofs" slightly curved, like the points of the arrowheads used by the Woodland Era Munsee Lenape tribe, that inhabited the region in pre colonial times. At the center is a daffodil, a symbol of life, longevity and hope to the Welsh early settlers, whose livelihood was in the slate mines. A symbol of Christianity  eternal life, and sustenance, two fish, signifying the purifying aspects of the Delaware River nearby, and the creek that runs through town, surround the daffodil.
Pictured above are the "Hands" and "Hearts" of Bangor. The adage "Many hands make light work" was true of this mosaic. I worked with the eighth graders to develop the themes, choose the imagery, and work them into a symmetric, mandala like design. The cutting and assembly of the glass was expertly done by "Expressions in Glass" on Johnsonville Road in Bangor, PA

                                 The five petals of this daffodil remind me of the head, hands and legs of the human figure, with the red center like a  heart, a central touchstone for the entire piece.

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