Kempe offers a radical revaluation of the life, work and reputation of Charles Eamer Kempe (1837-1907), one of the most remarkable and influential figures in late Victorian and Edwardian church art. Kempe's name became synonymous with a distinctive style of stained glass, furnishing and decoration deriving from late mediaeval and early Renaissance models. To this day, his hand can be seen in churches and cathedrals worldwide. Drawing on newly available archive material, Adrian Barlow evaluates Kempe's achievement in creating a Studio or School of artists and craftsmen who interpreted his designs and remained fiercely loyal to his aesthetic and religious ideals. He assesses his legacy and reputation today, as well as exploring his networks of patrons and influence, which stretched from the Royal Family and the Church of England hierarchy to the literary and artistic beau monde. These networks intersected at Kempe's stunning Sussex country house, Old Place, his 'Palace of Art'. Created to embody his ideals of beauty and history, it holds the key to understanding his contradictory personality, his public and private faces. This book will appeal to everyone interested in Victorian art in general and stained glass in particular. Detailed and wide-ranging, Kempe tells a compelling story.
Publisher: James Clarke & Co Ltd
Number of pages: 335
Weight: 731 g
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
"Forget what you knew, or thought you knew, about Kempe! Adrian Barlow's reexamination of the life, art and work of Charles Eamer Kempe and his circle is a masterful exercise in biography and art history."
Dr Jasmine Allen, Curator, The Stained Glass Museum, Ely
"This is a timely and long-awaited study of the work of C.E. Kempe and his successor company, not only in stained glass but within a wider context of later 19th and early 20th century design and the Arts and Crafts movement. Its illustrations draw attention to the consistently high quality of the firm's work and the informative text should put its reputation where it properly belongs, equal to and sometimes even above its contemporary rivals."
Dr Donald Buttress, LVO, OBE, Surveyor Emeritus of Westminster Abbey
'Adrian Barlow's book is a scholarly biography of the outstanding and prolific stained-glass artist Charles Kempe.'
Goodall, John, Country Life, pg92, 9th January 2019
'One comes away with a sense of the shape of Kempe's life, an interesting set of insights into his working methods, and, above all, the sense that he's a considerable artist.' 'Adrian Barlow's Kempe will send people back to the work, with much more background knowledge, with a clearer understanding of how his big Victorian studio worked, and, above all, with new enthusiasm and new eyes.'
- Phillip Wilk, 'Into the Light', English Buildings, 29 November 2018
"This book is invaluable for the way in which it adds significantly to our understanding of the man, the studio, the works and the era"
- Jonathan Evens, Artway.eu, http://www.artway.eu/content.php?id=2704&lang=en&action=sho
"excellent new book"
-Michael Hall, Apollo, December 2018, pp.24-25
"Drawing on sustained research, much of it using material only recently rediscovered, this is a splendid account of Kempe and his world"
-William Whyte, Church Times, 17 January 2019, https://www.churchtimes.co.uk/articles/2019/18january/books-arts/book-reviews/kempe-the-life-art-andlegacy-of-charles-eamer-kempe-adrian-barlo
Balow's presentation of the life, art, and influence of Kempe is compelling.
Reading Religion, 2020
"Gives and expert account of the external circumstances of Kempe's career"
Nicholas Shrimpton, Modern Believing, pp. 293-295, July 2020
excellent ... Adrian barlow shows an urgency and vitality to Charles Eamer Kempe's life and career
Graham McLaren, Ecclesiology Today vol. 58, June 2020