France Travel Planner by Tom Brosnahan & Jane Fisher   Stained Glass, Reims Cathedral, France
Ranging from historic to modern, Reims Cathedral boasts beautiful glass.

 


 

 

 

The Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Reims is a dominant structure in the city of Reims. Known for its beautiful sculpture and statuary, the Cathedral also has beautiful stained glass windows throughout.

Although the cathedral was heavily damaged during World War I and some statuary and stained glass features were destroyed or damaged, some 13th century stained glass remains, having been restored. Most notable are the rose windows. The west window (over the main entrance) depicts the creation, while the rose window in the north transept illustrates the dormition and assumption of Virgin Mary.

Rose window, Reims cathedral, France
Western rose window, with the gallery of kings below.

But the cathedral also reflects the twentieth century. Artist Marc Chagall created three beautiful stained glass panels in the mid 1970s. These windows are in the apse of the cathedral, behind the main altar.

The left hand window focuses on the Old Testament and the tree of Jesse. It culminates at the top with a beautiful Virgin and Child, shown with green haloes indicating rebirth.

Chagall stained glass, Reims cathedral
Chagall's Virgin and Child, Reims Cathedral.

The middle window is devoted to the stories of Abraham and Christ. Christ on the cross dominates the right hand panel.

The third window, on the right, reminds us of the other great function of the Reims Cathedral, the coronation of the kings of France.

Chagall also created stained glass pieces for the magnificent cathedral in Metz, about 200 kilometers (124 miles) to the east of Reims (map).

In addition to the Chagall windows, the apse also contains nine windows by the contemporary German artist Imi Knoebel. Installed in 1971, these windows reflect the original colors used in the cathedral stained glass, presenting them in abstract form.

As the light changes throughout the day, you'll see different colors and details in all of the windows. It is fascinating to see the range from medieval to modern art represented in these masterpieces.

If you're interested in stained glass, you'll also want to consider a visit to Chartres, famed for its beautiful medieval glass.


What to See & Do in Reims

Notre-Dame de Reims Cathedral

Rêve de Couleurs

Palais du Tau

Hotels in Reims

Champagne Wineries

Reims Restaurants

Reims Transport

Tourist Information

About Reims

 

 

Stained glass, Reims Cathedral

Above, Three panels by Imi Knoebel.

Below, Detail of stained glass, Reims Cathedral.

 

Stained glass, Reims cathedral

 

 

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