Stained glass is coming to the Metro system, along with a set of ceramic columns, a large object made of sailcloth and clear plastic and some other items of fabric, metal and paper.

That's because the Metro board has decided to continue its experiment of allowing artwork in the subway stations.

The board, after years of foot-dragging over the concept and a year of debate over a specific proposal and heated disagreement over particular artworks, agreed in June 1988 to allow nine works by Washington area artists to adorn stations on a trial basis.

"The public response was wonderful," said Eliot Pfanstiehl, chairman of the MetroArt Consortium, a coalition of local arts councils that worked with Metro to arrange the display.

"Penguin Rush-Hour," a mural on the outside of the Silver Spring station, was such a hit that the Montgomery County Department of Transportation bought it for permanent display and organized its ride-sharing program around the penguin theme, Pfanstiehl said.

The District government bought "Yellow Line," a neon sculpture that remains over one of the exits at the Gallery Place station. "Scenes of Washington," a painting that originally hung at Metro Center, has been moved to Union Station.

The other works have come down, but the experiment "was a regional, artistic success," Pfanstiehl said. "And it was a political success," he said.

The Metro board decided Thursday to allow seven more pieces to be displayed at six stations for two years. They will be installed over the next six months. First American Bank, which sponsored the first MetroArt display, is contributing $50,000 to cover most of the costs. State and local arts councils and jurisdictions have kicked in an additional $40,000, Pfanstiehl said.

The new artworks are:

A back-lighted stained-glass mural by Vicki Keating to be mounted at the New Carrollton station.

Five lighted stained-glass fixtures by Hazel Rebold and a fabric mural by Pacita Abad to be installed at Metro Center.

Two ceramic columns by Hester Nelson to be displayed at the King Street station.

A sailcloth and clear plastic sculpture by Elizabeth R. Mears to hang at the Shady Grove station.

A colored aluminum panel by Shirley Koller for the Ballston station.

A varnished paper mural by Y. David Chung for the Huntington station.