Gloria Dei

Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Completed: 2011


Twenty-four architectural glass panels for the chancel façade: 750 sq. ft. in size and rising over 36 ft. in height. Each panel was created using a number of traditional and contemporary glass treatments, including silver stain, acid-etching, sandblasting, and enameling to achieve a watercolor-like experience of the glass.

The abstract emphasis evokes the contemporary setting for this new-construction 21st-century worship space. Gloria Dei, the Glory to God, is expressed through movement, color and light. The transcendent qualities of glass, illuminate spiritual themes which allow worshipers to experience the liturgy in distinct ways each time the congregation gathers for worship. Reflecting the Trinity and the floorplan of the Church, the 24 panels cycle in thirds through the Creation story beginning with Genesis on the left, the life of Christ in the center, and life of the Church on the right. The artwork progresses with an internal rhythm, panel by panel, repeating motifs and colors to evoke the emotions of joy, appreciation, awe and wonder of God’s work in our lives. For example, a vertical yellow band extends from above in the center and reaches downward to literally touch the earth below. This abstract gesture shows how God can touch us in the midst of our lives.

Project Team:

Scott Parsons, Artist
Derix Glasstudios, Taunusstein, Germany
Koch Hazard Architects, Sioux Falls, South Dakota