Friday, January 4, 2013

Parish Church of St. Peter Leeds

On February 21, 1865 - six years after starting his first mosaic workshop in Murano - Dr. Salviati gave a heartfelt lecture in front of the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society about both the history of the craft of mosaic making, as well as about the benefits of the revolutionary new process that Lorenzo Radi developed for the Salviati-made pieces. Within just a few years, the local parish church would also be fitted with these mosaics.

Also known as Leeds Minster, this English Gothic style church was rebuilt in 1839-41 by architect R.D. Chantrell.

The east-end sanctuary (seen to the left of the central tower), which contains an arcade of Salviati mosaics possibly from 1876 depicting the twelve apostles, was renovated between 1870 and 1880 by G.E. Street. This seems to be a similar type of chancel expansion that was done in 1870 in the Gonville and Caius Chapel at Cambridge.

The altar, above which hangs a painting of The Last Supper, circa 1838.

The eastern expansion, after Street's 1870s renovations.

From the Left: Peter, Andrew, James, John and Phillip 

James and Paul behind the High Altar (Left)

Barnabas and Thomas behind the High Altar (Right) 

From the Right: Bartholomew, Matthew, Simon, Matthew (Thaddeus?) and Judas

While Salviati's mosaics were always made of glass enamel tesserae, the central reredos of Christ in Glory surrounded by angels was made of colored marble and alabaster. It was designed by G.E. Street and executed by Thomas Earp and Rust in 1888 following cartoons by Clayton and Bell.

Salviati, Antonio. " On Mosaics (Generally) and the Superior Advantages, Adaptability and General Use in the Past and Present Age, in Architectural and Other Decorations, or Enamel Mosaics: Being a Paper Read Before the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society", on February 21st, 1865. London: Wertheimer and Co., 1865.
British Listed Buildings
grahamway's flickr Photostream
Budby's flickr Photostream
GENUKI Leeds Parish Church History 
Leeds Parish Church 
Barr, Sheldon. Venetian Glass Mosaics: 1860-1917. London: Antique Collectors' Club, 2008. 125.
Wrathmell, Susan. Pevsner Architectural Guides: Leeds. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2005. 45.

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