Divine principle:
Stained Glass Design no. 19

Jacoba van Heemskerck (1876 – 1923)

Drawing by Jacoba van Heemskerck, watercolour and ink on cardboard, 132 x 99,5 cm
© erloschen

The watercolour shows the design for a stained glass window. Abstract yet organic shapes, long, narrow strips of bright colour. Black lines divide the purple, orange, blue and green pieces. In the centre: a red shape reminiscent of a tree.

Glass – a medium for both light and colour. The Dutch painter Jacoba van Heemskerck (1876 – 1923) adopted the transparent substance in 1914 as a theme and as a material. She wanted her colourful windows to open the interior to “cosmic space”. This design illustrates her principle: regular shapes and pure colours slot into an abstract linear web of lead. The web establishes a picture while ensuring the stability of the window. At the centre of the composition stands a red tree, its branches tangling with the background of purple and cool blue.

Stained Glass Design No. 19 was made for the combined mosaic and stained glass workshops Puhl & Wagner, Gottfried Heinersdorff and in 1919 it went on show at the famous avant-garde gallery "Der Sturm" in Berlin. The gallery had its own magazine and publishing house, so this was an important platform for Van Heemskerck and her art. She was also a close friend of its founder Herwarth Walden, who profoundly influenced the artist’s work.

Stained Glass Design no. 19

Watercolour and ink on cardboard
132 x 99,5 cm
Acquired by the senator for science and art with funds from the Foundation DKLB, Berlin 1975

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