Worcester Free Public Library

Kiln Formed Art Glass Doors

When the Main Library was renovated in 2001, the library commissioned Stephen Knapp to create entry doors.  Reminiscent of the copper doors that had once graced the entrances to the original 1964 building, Knapp created two sets of doors from kiln formed glass.  Each set measures 7’ x 12’.
The main entrance off Library Lane has “The New Doors.”  These panels pay homage to the original bronze doors to the library that had early type-faces cast in the surface. The valentines refer to the origin of the modern Valentine's Day card in Worcester, and the horse and buggy is a tribute to the founder of the library, Dr. John Green.  A polar bear at the local science center shares a spot with piano keys - a reference to the internationally renowned Worcester Music Festival, the nation's oldest.
The entrance off Salem Street has “Southwick, Hoffman and Friends.”  Allusions to the community, its history, and literary past can all be found within these panels. They have become a focal point for visitors as they stop to discuss the images and try to determine the references.   These words, presented in relief in the kiln formed glass, represent some of the many subjects that people come to the library to explore.  This section, with the structured detail of the Eiffel Tower and the flowing lines of the signature, shows the ability of kiln formed art glass to be an eloquent carrier of color and light.
Stephen Knapp, a Worcester resident, is internationally renowned for lightpaintings and commissioned art works in public, corporate and private collections, in such diverse mediums as kiln formed glass, dichroic glass, and cast glass; sculptural metal, carved stone, mosaic tile and ceramic. He is known for his mixed medium sculpture sculptural furniture and creative lighting pieces. He frequently writes and lectures on architectural art glass, the commission process, and architectural art.
To read more about Mr. Knapp, visit his website, http://www.stephenknapp.com/

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