Our Exhibit is now closed. We thank our supporters who attended the exhibit and hope you enjoyed learning more about St. Vincent and Sarah Fisher Center. Visit us on YouTube to view our Windows of Opportunity Exhibit Virtual Tour and other SVSF Center videos.
Windows Of Opportunity
The Stained Glass Windows Of St. Vincent And Sarah Fisher Center
To celebrate 170 years of service to children and families of Southeastern Michigan, St. Vincent and Sarah Fisher Center presented its historic stained glass windows in a display called The Windows of Opportunity.
In 1928, a fire destroyed the main residential building of the Center, which housed orphaned children. Charles and Sarah Fisher made a generous donation of $750,000 to rebuild the residence for the children and the Sisters that took care of them. Part of the construction was to include stained glass windows that depicted nursery rhymes, which were installed in the kindergarten classroom. The building architects, Weston & Ellington Architects and Engineers in Detroit, commissioned Detroit Stained Glass Works to create the windows. The windows, depicting Mother Goose nursery rhymes and tales, were installed by the Fisher Body Company in 1929.
These windows still exist today as a beautiful and enduring symbol of a legacy of giving back to the community. They are also a unique representation of the many years that St. Vincent and Sarah Fisher Center has been helping those in need, providing countless opportunities to residents of our community, as well as the Center’s commitment to continuing its heritage of service. The continuing splendor of these windows also embody that the Center realizes it does not support the community on its own. That with partners, individuals, corporations and the community – together, we provide Windows of Opportunity.
Why Are These Windows Unique?
This series of windows were created by the Detroit Stained Glass Works (1861-1970). The studio was the first stained glass company in Michigan and thought, by some academics, to be the first group of stained glass artists in this country. The techniques and materials used to create this group of scenes and characters are the same as those used for over 1,000 years. These German artisans used handmade sheet glass and lead came as the foundation for the kiln fired paints and stains that depict the figures and present the visual stories we see and enjoy today. The original working drawings, called “cartoons”, present a very unique opportunity to see the actual first steps in the creation of these windows. These are rarely seen outside of the stained glass studio environment and there are approximately five artists in the State of Michigan who work in this medium.