Abbot Suger (1081 – 1151) is referred to as the father of Gothic architecture and design. Suger came from a humble knightly family and grew into one of the most influential church and statesman during the Middle Ages in France. In 1091 at the young age of 10, Suger was sent to the abbey of St.Denis to begin his education in religion.
It is said that there, he befriended the future king Louis VI of France. By 1106 Suger became the secretary to the head of the monastery of Saint-Denis, and eventually over his career Suger became the head of the monastery of St.-Denis.
Suger is most known for his rebuilding of the Abbey of St.-Denis, near Paris, also known as Cathedral Basilica of St Denis. The new styles and structures used by Suger to redesign St. Denis marked the emergence of Gothic style in France. Abbot was deeply inspired by beauty and splendour in his designs and wished to commemorate his love for his God and religion through his artistic works. Suger engineered and designed the concept of the flying buttress, which he created to provide extra support to high walls used in his designs.
These walls were less thick compared to the walls used in Romanesque churches. He also incorporated stained glass windows into St. Denis, and used coloured drawings to depict stories and messages. The building embodied extravagance and richness in its designs.