Stained Glass Windows
The most frequent problems of the stained glass windows are due to the lack of maintenance or the aging of the windows, of its components or the support structures. One has to guard oneself against certain eventualities, protect the stained glasses against bad weather and vandalism, and monitor the state of the inner sashes. If they are too watertight (without circulation of air between the two windows) the inner sashes can contribute to an acceleration of the deterioration of the wooden framework, as well as the lead in the stained glass. On the other hand, a stained glass window without inner sash is exposed to even greater danger. The subsidence or compression of leads, which one can recognize by the bulging of the window, can lead to the breaking of pieces of glass. Like all the elements of a structure, it is always advisable to conduct regular examinations and maintenance.
Church of Saint-Mathieu
The stained glass windows of the church of Saint-Mathieu in Montérégie were classified historical monuments by the Ministère de la Culture et des Communications of Québec in 1977. The collection of the church is rather unique since it contains stained glass windows of an extraordinary range both in their technical and pictorial features.
Church of Saint-Denis sur Richelieu
The 28 stained glass windows of the church of Saint-Denis were produced around 1922 by the O' Shea workshop.
The work, started in 1998, focused on the restoration of all the windows. Each window is composed of a central part, with an outlining border divided into small sections (with floral motifs). Budgetary constraints for the project limited the restoration to merely a section of the stained glass. Thus, the much larger central part was entirely restored while the small sections were examined and only basic corrective measures were carried out.
The central sections of the windows were entirely dismantled and completely re-leaded. The stained glass windows were generally in very good shape. There was very little breakage in the glass, and the painted pieces were in good condition. On the other hand, the lead had become very dry, and the windows were installed very tightly within the frames, pressing the parts against each other, and creating a danger of cracking.
Stained Glass Window from the Church of Saint-Mathieu in Montérégie
Re-leaded stained glass of Saint-Denis sur Richelieu's Church on the tables of the restorer's studio (photo: Studio du Verre).
Unleaded stained glass window of Saint-Denis sur Richelieu's Church (photo: Studio du Verre).
Detail from the Back Stained Glass Window of Christ-Roi's Cathedral of Gaspé.