The Wareham Forge

Window Grills

SECURITY that looks like ART

Why should your safety be oppressive? The strength of solid steel is hidden in graceful curves, perhaps set behind stained glass panels. You will see only the art - but know the hidden protection in these decorative window grills.

Graham House - Guelph Ontario
'Disks' - Front Door Security Panel

Winter 2009

Although originally intended as a security grill, this project in the end became an artistic feature for a 1960's bungalow in Guelph Ontario. I followed the project on a series of blog postings, edited here into an illustrated description of the project as it progressed.

Go on for the commentary

Ten Cate House - Beaver Valley Ontario
'Swans' - Staircase insert panels

This is one of the larger pieces of several I have done over the years for a beautiful custom built home just north of Wareham. The house is pearched near the top of the north side of the Beaver Valley.
The customer wanted to partially secure the exposed sides of the stair case leading to the second floor. At the same time, he wanted not to block in the feeling of light and space in the open concept layout of the house. The trace work design was inspired by one of the antique Dutch blue ware plates which are prominently displayed on the kitchen walls below.

"A River Ran Through It"

"A River Ran Through It" is a concept piece that struck me while a number of elements came together - seemingly by accident. When I first was sent the call to entry for the Riversong Gallery's June 2004 group exhibit, I was taken by the title (A River Runs Through It). At the same time, as much as I wanted to produce a new piece for the show, my work is rarely thematic in nature.
While I was attending a glass bead making workshop in February, I was attracted to the small selection of dichromic glass on display. The iridescent colours are the result of some high tech wizardry. Normally the material is used sparingly - it is expensive enough to be priced by the square inch. (Other coloured glass is purchased by the square FOOT!) The striking blue glass that makes the centre of this panel was the inspiration point.
Within the frame, forged strips echo water tossed kelp. Starkly black, they are washed over by a wave of brushed stainless steel which weaves through them. In stark contrast to this colour less image is the bright iridescent blue panel glimpsed through a porthole. Is this a remembrance of things long lost, or a window to imagination?
"A River Ran Through It" is the third panel in a series that echo the four elements - in this case Water. All feature brightly coloured and patterned glass set in metal frames : "Green Glass Grill" (below) / Earth, "Blue Sky" / Air, with the fourth, representing Fire, still to be created.
This piece has mounting holes on all four sides of its sturdy welded frame, should the owner wish to permanently mount it as a window security grill. It can also be hung on wall or window as a 'metal painting'. It is designed to be viewed from either side.

Circle Grill
"Circle Grill"
This item available! Interested?

"Circle Grill" was created for the exhibit 'Traditions & Innovations' in 2003. This piece is a smaller version of a possible garden gate. It is sized to fit a window18" x 36" +. It also could be wall hung as seen here. The uprights are forged from 3/4' angle, flattened and spread to create the circle within an oval pattern in the positive and negative spacing. Finished with metal enamel paint for outdoor use, this piece is also striking as seen here, hanging as a wall panel .

Green Grill
"Green Glass Grill"
"Green Glass Grill" was one of my first artistic window grills - and the first to embody the concept of coloured glass to hide the security elements. In this piece the frame is intended to be side mounted into the window opening. The individual rods of the decorative fill are light weight 1/4 inch diameter round rod. These gain considerable strength from the way they are interlaced (showing the influence of Celtic designs) to create a solid web of metal. Another feature of this style is the way light casts a shadow of the centre elements on to the coloured glass panel

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All text & images © Darrell Markewitz - the Wareham Forge