Glencairn's Cloister

Number 8, 2016

Many first-time visitors to Glencairn Museum experience the building’s dramatic exterior before ever venturing inside. Glencairn’s grounds and gardens, together with those of Bryn Athyn Cathedral and Cairnwood Estate, are a favorite strolling destination for local residents. On Glencairn’s southwest corner, a graceful portico leads from the expansive lawn and carefully tended gardens to a magnificent cloister. This issue of Glencairn Museum News explores the cloister and the inspirations behind its design—including the capitals of the arcade with twelve species of birds, the twin-arched window providing a view toward the valley, and the special bench featuring a ram and ewe, carved from granite for Raymond and Mildred Pitcairn.

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Glencairn's Two-Foot Tall Medieval Hymnal

Number 7, 2016

Glencairn Museum’s large book of plainchant (75cm tall) was made in 16th-century Spain, most likely for the monastic Order of Calatrava. Like a modern hymnal, it contains the music needed for religious services, including 116 hymns as well as antiphons, responsories, and other music.

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An Interview with Jens Langlotz, Bryn Athyn's Master Stone Carver

Number 6, 2016

Recently Glencairn Museum News interviewed Jens Langlotz, Master Stone Carver at Bryn Athyn Cathedral, about the history of stone carving in Bryn Athyn and about ongoing preservation efforts at the Cathedral and Glencairn. Then we climbed the scaffold above the Cathedral’s south entry to watch Jens and his assistant, Grayson Zuber, in action as they replaced several badly worn limestone finials with exact copies.

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Medieval Sculptors at Glencairn Museum

Number 5, 2016

In this essay for Glencairn Museum News, Dr. Julia Perratore, Mellon Curatorial Fellow at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, explores the world of the medieval sculptor, who mastered “a craft that was challenging and at times back-breaking, requiring flexibility and ingenuity.”

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“All that Glitters is Not Gold”: Glencairn’s Siren Cauldron Attachment

Number 3, 2016

In 1982, as Glencairn was in the process of being transformed from a family home into a museum, an unusual work of ancient art was discovered in one of the family bedrooms—being used as a doorstop! In this essay, David and Irene Romano discuss Glencairn’s Syro-Hittite siren cauldron attachment and compare it to other known examples from the ancient Greek and Near Eastern worlds.

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Easter Art at Glencairn

Number 2, 2016

For the first time in decades, Glencairn Museum is exhibiting three Easter scenes made in the 1920s for the Raymond and Mildred Pitcairn family. The scenes were designed by Winfred S. Hyatt, the principal stained-glass artist and designer for Bryn Athyn Cathedral and Glencairn.

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The Pitcairn Flight into Egypt

Number 1, 2016

This square panel of medieval stained glass—portraying the Holy Family journeying to Egypt to escape the massacre ordered by King Herod (Matthew 2:13-15)—may be the most famous work of art in Glencairn Museum.

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Christmas Traditions and World Nativities: Two Exhibitions at Glencairn Museum

Number 12, 2015

This year Glencairn Museum is featuring two exhibitions during the holiday season. Christmas Traditions in Many Lands reveals how Christmas was celebrated in a variety of European countries during the 19th and 20th centuries. It features objects and images from the collection of the National Christmas Center and Museum. Our seventh annual World Nativities exhibition presents 45 three-dimensional Nativity scenes, collected from around the world.

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A Nativity Inspired by Bryn Athyn Architecture

Number 11, 2015

This year Glencairn is featuring two exhibitions during the holiday season. As part of the seventh annual World Nativities exhibition, Glencairn is presenting a unique creation by Navidad Nativities of Bucks County, PA. This custom Nativity setting, with stunning interior lighting, was inspired by the art and architecture of Bryn Athyn Cathedral and Glencairn. The human and animal figures were hand carved in wood and dressed in starched fabric by Original Heide, a family business in the Italian Alps. The second exhibition, Christmas Traditions in Many Lands, reveals how Christmas was celebrated in a variety of European countries during the 19th and 20th centuries, and features objects and images from the collection of the National Christmas Center and Museum in Lancaster, PA.

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