Christmas decorations on Windsor Castle, part of the town council's festivities, have literally brought to light the publications and lectures of Aberdeen University academic Professor Jane Geddes.
Her book Medieval Decorative Ironwork in England features the gilded doors of St George’s Chapel, Windsor on its cover, while her recent delivery of The Maurice Bond Memorial Lecture in the chapel itself raised interest in the beauty and historical significance of these doors.
Professor Geddes explained: “They were made in the 1240’s, using a complicated and innovative method of die-stamping the wrought ironwork, to reproduce naturalistic leaves and flowers on Trees of Life. Some of the stamped motifs, including the name ‘Gilebertus’ provide clues that the artist was Gilbert de Bonnington, a moneyer who learnt the technique from making gold coins.
“The publication of my book brought the significance of these doors to national attention and they are now seen as a major work of art.
“I am delighted to see that they have been chosen to feature in this year’s display of festive lights. The projections are spectacular and a wonderful new way to showcase the attractions of the Chapel. Old iron door hinges have never been appreciated as a glamorous art form, so it is certainly rewarding to see these medieval designs lit up brighter and larger than a Christmas tree.”
The image of the Gilebertus doors is one of a number of projections onto the Garter Tower rotated throughout the Christmas period. Others include images taken from stained glass windows of St George’s Chapel, some of its unique architectural features and motifs from books in the Chapter Library.