Harry Clarke

County Mayo boasts a rich stained glass heritage. Fine examples can be found in many churches and buildings. Harry Clarke was an artist of high technical and imaginative ability. He was influenced by the Art Nouveau and Art Deco movements and by the French Symbolist movement.

He merged typical motifs of Art Nouveau with mythology, legend and archetype imbued with a clear Celtic character.

A huge variety of small figures of animals, human beings and plant designs enriches the borders of his stained glass windows reminding the margins of the ancient manuscripts.

In 1921 he took over his father’s studio and got some ecclesiastical commissions in the West of Ireland. Consequently in Mayo seventeen locations, mostly churches, have wonderful stained windows designed and created by Harry Clarke himself (four of them) or executed in his Studio under his supervision. The most of them depicts Mary, Christ and elegant saints.

Canon MacDonald of Newport, Dean d’Alton and Monsignor Thomas Shannon of Ballinrobe were among the parish priests who commissioned his windows for their churches.

In 1925-1926 he designed and executed “The Adoration of the Magi” window in Kilmaine.

Between 1921 and 1931 he created the windows for the churches in Ballinrobe, Newport and Roundfort, which were executed in his studio.

“The Last Judgement” window in St. Patrick’s Church in Newport is the most beautiful and last window created by him.

Ballindine, Claremorris, Cong and Knock boast windows created and designed by the Clarke Studios under his supervision during the 1920s.