History of Mosaic Classes

In April, Piece by Piece artists went back in time with returning instructor Tracey Corinne. This month’s workshops focused on the history of mosaic, with an emphasis on the types of materials early mosaicists used. Tracey shared some great historical imagery and led a discussion on creating with a limited palette. With a slim selection of hard materials, early mosaic fabricators used primarily pebbles, small stones, and shells. These few options provided tesserae that would last hundreds of years and inspire modern mosaic artists to this day.

Stones for mosaics

As a project, participant artists used these same materials to create imagery in mosaic. Using a limited palette is a challenge and also a great way to focus on technique. It allows more focus on composition over color. The artwork becomes more about line, shape, and value--all key elements to design. While some artists during the classes created representational work, others played with the texture of pebbles and made abstract or geometric pieces.

Mosaic being created with stones


Many participant artists enjoyed working with these natural materials and plan to incorporate them into future pieces. Modern mosaics often make use of both natural and manmade materials, giving an artwork rich texture and interest. In the directed studies workshops at Piece by Piece, we offer ways for participants to experiment with different styles and techniques as well as materials and substrates. With these experiences, individuals can find their own creative voice and make art in new and innovative ways.

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