Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Doors Not Quite Open At The Embassy

I stopped by the Armenian Embassy during my Doors Open wanderings. It was on the list for Doors Open destinations, though in fact the door was locked. Perhaps the schedule had it listed for both weekend days, but it had only been open on the Saturday. At any rate, I've been inside before, and it is beautiful. Tomorrow  I have something else for the theme day, but I'll be back into Doors Open posts shortly thereafter.

Monday, June 29, 2015

The Blind Artist And His West Window

In the sanctuary at Knox Presbyterian, there is a cabinet containing military colours dating back to the First World War. 

I mentioned yesterday about William Wilson designing the east windows of the church. Years later he returned to do the stained glass windows on the west side, on the balcony. At this point in his life, Wilson was blind, and dictated his vision to a colleague. The theme of this window is the revelation of St. John.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

The Old Stone Presbyterian Church

One of my stops during Doors Open was a return to Knox Presbyterian Church.

I like the carving above the sanctuary entrance. The inscription above reads "I am alpha and omega; the beginning and the end."

The east window above the altar was designed by a Scottish artist, William Wilson, who incorporated twenty thousand pieces of glass into the work. It carries the theme of the coming of Christ.Years later he would design the church's west window, which I will show you tomorrow.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

A Curious Stained Glass Window

Inside First Baptist Church, I wanted a closeup of the lectern, where the name of Frederick MacAllister is marked in the wood. He was an Royal Canadian Air Force pilot killed in action during the Second World War.

This silver trowel can be found at the back of the sanctuary. It was given to Prime Minister MacKenzie when he laid the cornerstone of the church, and returned to the church by his grandson. One of the members present mentioned something I didn't know- MacKenzie had been a stonemason in his younger years, and preferred a proper trowel to a ceremonial one.

I came up to the organ loft, where the organist was playing. 

Up there I got a good look at the stained glass windows on the north wall of the church. They are referred to as the Memorial Windows.

They are a peculiar set; Christ is flanked on the right by a riverman and a lumberjack on the left, with nature incorporated into the glasswork. Both are symbols of the Ottawa Valley, and so they're fitting for the sanctuary.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Inside First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church was another destination for me during Doors Open weekend.

Prime Minister Alexander MacKenzie worshiped here during his time in Ottawa. At the time the street outside went under its previous name; today it is Laurier Avenue, and the church ended up with a new name.

I wanted to emphasize the windows this time out. They're quite different from other church windows, incorporating elements of nature and astronomy. I have more from here tomorrow.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Pearson Building

The Lester B. Pearson Building is along Sussex Drive, and was part of Doors Open. This is home to the Department Of Foreign Affairs And International Trade, and was built in the 1970s in a modernist style. It is named for one of our best- if not our best- prime ministers.

The lobby area was busy. Staff were on hand, and one thing I should have photographed was a book that looked to be five hundred pages thick- part one of four of a formal treaty. This totem pole caught my eye.

The same applied to this bear sculpture.

A portrait of the Queen could be found here as well.

Along with a statue of the great man himself. This is a scale model of the statue of Pearson that stands on Parliament Hill (a statue that is currently off limits due to work being done around the area). You can see pics of that statue here. The same scale model statue was in the Rideau Club, another Doors Open destination where photos weren't allowed (more's the pity). The Club, which predates Confederation and is marking its 150th anniversary this year, was started by Prime Minister John A. Macdonald, and in its present location has great views of the city, beautiful rooms (one of which is filled with Yousuf Karsh portraits, very fitting, since he was a member), and a welcoming atmosphere. The Pearson statue caught my eye when I found him in one of the rooms, and the attendant in the room mentioned that many people she had seen through the day spoke as highly of him as I did. Pearson is a far cry from the vindictive current PM (hello there, Stevie!), who no doubt despises any predecessor who isn't a Tory. 

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Stained Glass Art

As mentioned yesterday, here are most of the remaining stained glass windows inside St. Peter's. The church is listed as an Evangelical Lutheran church- that question came up in the previous post. St. Peters has over a century of history, dating back to 1910 as a congregation. The first church was built a few blocks from here on Lyon (and has a curious repurposing today as a salon-spa). The present church on Cathedral Hill dates back to 1954, and is done in an English Gothic style.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

In The Sanctuary

I paid a return visit to St. Peter's Lutheran Church for Doors Open. As it turned out, this was the last stop of the weekend for me for photos- the camera decided it had enough. I'm not posting in any particular order, mind you, so plenty more of this to come.

This is the east wall of the church. The window from the inside is splendid.

The organ is the first thing the visitor sees.

I liked the patterns on the wood of the lectern.

And here's the altar window from the inside. At the bottom, landmarks from the city, including Parliament Hill and the Supreme Court, are included.

I have more of the windows from the sanctuary tomorrow, but here's one of them.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Vietnam House

My Doors Open wanderings also took me to Vietnam House in the Glebe. Built in 1913, this Spanish Colonial house now serves as the residence for the Vietnamese ambassador.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Royal College

The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons participated once again this year in Doors Open after missing last year. The organization is housed in a former convent on the south side of the Rideau Canal. It is an administrative centre as opposed to an educational college; while medical students come here for testing, they're set mostly in hospitals over a wide area.

When this was a convent, this particular area was open to the elements; the College had it redesigned with a sun roof letting in a lot of light. It is now the main entrance of the largest building on the property.

This spiral stairs is in what is now used as a library space. In the convent days, this was one half of a chapel for the nuns, who lived in seclusion. One wall was open so that during mass, the priest could be seen by the nuns as he preached in the adjoining chapel, which was open to the public.

That second chapel was through this doorway. The space is now used as a conference hall, and the stained glass windows have been preserved.