The Goddard & Gibbs Exhibitionists’ Winter Show

The Goddard & Gibbs Exhibitionists

24th November 2018 – 4th January 2019
Glass Tile Demonstration – 24.11.18 – 13:00 to 15:00
Private View Opening event – 24.11.18 – 16:00 to 18:00

In November 2017, GreatArt hosted the Goddard & Gibbs Exhibitionists as part of a celebration of the history of our stores building and the stunning glass artworks created here. We’re very pleased to welcome back once again Zoe Angle, Sophie Lister Hussain, Chris Madlin, Sharon McMullin, Laura Perry, Caroline Swash ATD FMPG, and Louise Watson MA (RCA), for a winter show of new glass artworks. These works will be available to view in our windows until January 2019.

Louise Watson MA (RCA)

Glass Tile demonstration

24.11.18 – 13:00 to 15:00

As part of the exhibition opening, Louise Watson MA (RCA) will be holding a demonstration in cutting and fusing glass to create decorative tile artworks. This will take place in our front of house area. Please feel free to drop in and ask Louise any questions you may have about her processes. This demonstration provides a wonderful insight into the skills of working with glass.

Private View Opening

24.11.18 – 16:00 to 18:00 – with complimentary light refreshments

A chance to meet the artists behind the work, most of whom trained, and all of whom worked, within the Goddard & Gibbs studio at 41 Kingsland Road.

Sophie Lister-Hussain (left), Zoe Angle (right)

About Goddard & Gibbs

Did you know the GreatArt store used to be one of the UK’s largest stained and decorative glass studios? 41-49 Kingsland Road was once the home of Goddard & Gibbs, founded in 1868, who carried out prestigious glass work for commissions all over the UK and internationally.

“Back in the 1960’s when I first heard of  them,  Goddard  and  Gibbs  were always spoken of as a very active and impressive  stained  glass  studio,  up there with the best and rivalled in the UK only by Powells, Whitefriars.

My  first  visit  to  their  premises  on Kingsland Road occurred in the 1970s shortly after I had been elected Hon Secretary  of  The  British  Society  of Master Glass Painters. Looking back, I seem to remember a dark ground floor area where the ‘leading up’ happened and  a  gloomy  back  area  where  the ‘cementing’  took  place.  Walls  were lined with racks for glass of every hue, texture, thickness and weight. Boxes of heavy lead ‘came’ were stacked on the floor.

Caroline Swash ATD FMPG

Upstairs the designer had been given a  room  of  his  own  while  the  glass painters  had  a  curtained  off  area of  their  own  on  the  first  floor.  Here they  brought  life  and  definition  to cut but unpainted glass pieces stuck onto  enormous  glass  frames  known as  ‘plates’.  Painting  freehand,  the painters  would  gradually  bring  the ‘cartoon’  drawing  to  life  on  glass. The painted glass would then be fired for  permanence  in  one  of  the  kilns, checked, repainted, refired and finally sent on to be glazed downstairs.”

The Walter Gibbs family firm, founded in 1868, joined Goddard’s Glass Works in 1900 with Gibbs as senior partner. Under  their  auspices  ‘Goddard  and Gibbs Studio’ was established at 41-49 Kingsland  Road  on  the  edge  of  the City.

Chris Madlin (left), Sharon McMullin (right)

With the demand for new stained glass memorials, the firm’s fame grew after the  Second  World  War.  Arthur Buss was chief designer at this time and orders came from all over the world. Goddard and Gibbs windows from this era can be found in Nigeria, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Canada, New Zealand, and USA as well as the UK.

When  Buss  retired  in  1970,  John Lawson  joined  the  firm  to  be  faced with the challenging task of designing new  stained  glass  for  airports, mosques,  villas  and  palaces.  These commissions  were  obtained  through the  salesmanship  of  the  firm’s  new owner Charles Clark whose company ‘Clark Eaton’ was already working in the Middle East.

With so many demanding commissions in progress, more skills were needed. Designers  Alan  Younger  and  Harry Cardross  joined  the  team,  Philip Broome supervised the creation and installation  of  the  windows  and  the general expansion inevitably brought new  ideas,  techniques  and  young, lively, people.

Sophie Hussain-Lister (left), Laura Perry (right)

In  1999  opportunities  came  to Goddard and Gibbs from an entirely different  quarter.  Following  Charles Clark’s  retirement,  Neil  Maurer  and his  team,Malcolm  Hord,  Mike  Snow, and Christopher  Borst  continued  to seek  overseas  commissions.  With the help of their USA representative, Goddard  and  Gibbs  were  invited  to submit designs for one of their 100 Temples for the year 2000.

Harry  Cardross’  designs  were chosen,  the  first  of  several  Mormon Temple  commissions  for  which  new techniques  and  skilled  artists  and artisans  were  needed.  Accordingly specialist  kilns  were  bought,  new fabricating  techniques  learnt  and different kinds of glass brought into use.  More  space  was  needed.  The Kingsland  Road  building  was  sold and  the  firm  moved  to  Bow  before closure in 2006.

Unquestionably this was an enormous loss to the glass community as well as to architects and designers who love this material and admired the work of the firm.

Zoe Angle

It is good to note that so many of those who worked at Goddard and Gibbs are still very active in the world of glass; including  Harry  Cardross,  Debora Coombs, Elaine Bell, Annie Ross Davies, Michelle  Anjou,  Amanda  Winfield, Jon  Mahoney,  Chris  Madlin,  Greville Thorne,  Mike  Wiley,  Rob  and  John Kirwin, Peter Young, Rachel Williams, Gail  McCarthy,  Matthew  Potts,  John Edwardes,  Louise  Watson,  Sophie Lister-Hussain, Zoe Angle, Laura Perry, Sharon  McMullin  and  Ginger  Ferrell. Most  are  creating  new  work  in  their own studios or are helping to conserve the nation’s historic heritage. In one way  or  another,  they  have  all  been inspired by their experience of working with Goddard and Gibbs.”

Caroline Swash ATD FMGP


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