The stained glass artist from Stockport
PUBLISHED: 17:38 09 May 2011 | UPDATED: 19:20 20 February 2013
Stockport's Kyran Hall turned his pane into gain and is now a successful stained glass artist. Emma Mayoh reports PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOHN COCKS
When Kyran Hall was made redundant he didn't know what to do next. But when he spotted a beautiful jewellery box made entirely out of glass, his mind was set on making his own. He spent months trawling libraries researching the techniques he needed to recreate the trinket but he finally did it.
That was 30 years ago and now the 57-year-old has produced traditional stained glass windows for houses, restaurants, pubs and even a womens prison. He also creates fused glass art works, jewellery and beautiful stained glass lighting.
It was the best thing I ever did, said Kyran. Im totally self taught and it was fascinating researching all of the different methods. Im using the same techniques that were first developed in the 17th century when plant hunters were trying to make a glass box to transport new specimens back to Kew Gardens.
Over the years I have worked on all kinds of pieces and glass is a joy to work with. I use painted glass and fired glass and it is very labour intensive but I get a lot of pleasure out of it. Ive gone full circle from making the jewellery boxes to now designing and creating the jewellery to go in them. For some people, setting up on your own is a big leap but I didnt feel that way.
Kyran started his business, Kyran Hall Art Glass, in the early 1980s in the attic of his home in Stockport. But, when he received commissions for pieces that were too large to get out of his front door, he opened a shop in Levenshulme before finally moving to his current studio at Insitu Manchester in Hulme.
He has worked on private commissions at properties owned by several high profile celebrities as well as on significant buildings including Millington Hall in Cheadle Hulme, once the home of Alderman John Millington. He created most of the windows now in this historic property and restored the remainder.
Kyran, who one day hopes to move his studio to North Wales where he also has a home, has also created windows for St Chads Church, in the same village, and for several other churches and synagogues. He also did a piece for Styal Womens Prison.
All of his designs are created in his Manchester studio but they are fired in his kiln at home in Stockport. He takes inspiration from places he visits, including National Trust properties across the country. Every piece he creates, from huge chandeliers to the tiny drop earrings, has a story behind it.
His work ranges from 6 for jewellery to more than 3,000 for an intricate stained glass art piece and he said: I get so much enjoyment out of what I do and its fantastic to see my work installed in peoples homes or hanging around someones neck on a necklace. This is a traditional skill that I taught myself and people like what I do. Knowing that makes me pretty happy.