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St. Mary the Protectress

The newly constructed church of St. Mary's in Vancouver presented a unique opportunity in its construction. In a traditional Byzantine church, the majority of the space is solid wall dedicated to iconography and/or fresco work. However, St. Mary's was constructed to be virtually all glass, with little wall space available.


Our studio was commissioned to design all of the sacred artwork and leaded stained glass. This included iconography in oil, mosaic and leaded stained glass. The main goal was developing a glass and a process that allowed us to go from darkness to light, as is traditional in iconography, as opposed to the historical method of painting the glass darker. Iconography in the medium of stained leaded glass was only the beginning of the challenge. The environment outside posed the greatest challenge with light conditions of two opposite extremes. A winter of mostly cloudy daylight and a summer season defined by bright sunlight. The design choice and treatment of glass had to provide an inspirational spiritual space regardless of external light conditions. 

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