Rein Slagmolen

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Rein Slagmolen was a Dutch-Australian artist and sculptor.

Early life[edit]

Marinus "Rein" Slagmolen was born November 7, 1916 near Utrecht, Utrecht, the Netherlands as the youngest son of Gijsbertus Slagmolen & Mathilda Maria Slagmolen-Jacobs. He had three older siblings Cornelia Maria "Corrie"(1906-2004), Gijsbertus "Gijs" (1908-1993), & Marinus Allegondus (1909-1911). Rein died January 29, 1999.

As a young man, Rein saw himself "as 'Tarzan' and looking for adventure"[1] and he spent some years in Africa before the Second World War. He enlisted in the Princess Irene Brigade in England in 1943, where he was part of Gevechts Groep 3 (GGIII). He returned to Africa after the war.

He studied art in Europe and Africa.[2]

Rein emigrated to Australia with his then wife Hilary Prudence "Prue" Reynolds Slagmolen in 1949 to establish himself as an artist and sculptor.

Vetrart Studios[edit]

H.W. Jones Pty Ltd, through the initiative of Rex Jones, expanded their lead-lighting work about the time the new St Andrew's Church, Brighton was being built in 1961. H.W. Jones was an established firm in Sydney Road, Brunswick, Melbourne and operated as experienced leadlighters, merchants and importers.

With the intention of providing a full design service, Rex Jones and Rein Slagmolen formed a partnership to establish Vetrart Studios for the purpose of designing and making windows and other art works. Vetrart Studios recognised the need for architects, artists and industry to work collaboratively in the design and construction of new church buildings.

Slagmolen also had a background in chemical research, leading to the making of such materials as 'Polylite' panels and a matrix for concrete glass windows. The latter, he claimed, was dimensionally stable and overcame the problem of these windows leaking because of the shrinking of the concrete matrix. He worked with the C.S.I.R.O. to develop innovative techniques to hold and strengthen glass panels.

In the early 1960s, Slagmolen and Vetrart Studios worked with the noted Australian church architect Louis Williams for such major commissions as St Andrew's Church, Brighton and St Boniface's Cathedral, Bunbury.

Another well known example of Slagmolen's work is the glass mosaic wall in the foyer of Qantas House in Melbourne.[3]

Slagmolen's artistic work was not restricted to a single material and he worked in bronze, aluminium, concrete, plastics, enamels as well as stained glass. Slagmolen was also among the artists exploring the possibilities of dalle de verre glasswork.[4]

Major examples of his work exist in:

  • St Andrew's Anglican Church, Brighton, Melbourne, Victoria
  • St Boniface's Anglican Cathedral, Bunbury, Western Australia
  • Holy Eucharist Catholic Church, Chadstone, Melbourne, Victoria
  • Qantas House, Melbourne, Victoria

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bronwyn Hughes, "Twentieth Century Stained Glass in Melbourne Churches", Masters thesis, Faculty of Arts, The University of Melbourne, 1997.
  2. ^ Bronwyn Hughes, "Twentieth Century Stained Glass in Melbourne Churches", Masters thesis, Faculty of Arts, The University of Melbourne, 1997.
  3. ^ http://www.artrecord.com/index.cfm/artist/10281-slagmolen-rein/
  4. ^ Bronwyn Hughes, "Twentieth Century Stained Glass in Melbourne Churches", Masters thesis, Faculty of Arts, The University of Melbourne, 1997.