30 November 2006

a quartet of mosaics

Thought I'd offer some better information (and more pics, of course) of four mosaics I did in the summer of 2005 (which I first posted a couple of weeks back).

1. and 2.: Grecian Delights

These two pieces were inspired by a Greek government-produced travel manual dating back to 2007 and full of amazing photos (mostly of places I've never managed to get in Greece, of course. My relatives had to choose to hail from the region of Greece literally furthest in the country from any seashore or beach. SIGH).

This was my (rather lame) interpretation of the cover page photo:

Done in mosaic tile. I couldn't decide what colour of grout to use, so lazily went with white. Er - I guess I should say that I went with white because it goes with the whitewash on the buildings (which constantly amazes me - do they whitewash these a million times a year! I can only imagine trying to keep a building white in Toronto for more than a week!)

The second is a scene regarding one of my favourite pastimes while in Greece:

The piece is largely translucent and meant to hang in front of a window (mostly so that you can see the wine shimmer - it actually looks real!) I used sea glass from Loblaws for the border.

The photographic inspiration was this:

(I have never had any formal art training and was concerned about getting the perspective correct on the chairs. My friend Veronica, who had had such training, was very helpful in this. Blame me for any mistakes, not her!)

The backing is one of several glass frames I located in the large garbage depository outside my building... someone for some reason decided to toss them upon moving! What a find!

I wish I could tell you where those two photos were taken. However, of course, the Greek government managed to put together a beautiful travel guide without actually telling you where 50 per cent of the photos were taken! How swift is that!?! (or, maybe it's a nefarious plot... they "forgot" to attribute the prettiest photos so that people would be forced to travel the whole country trying to find the places? Hmm. )

So, now I have two pieces of my very own Greek Schlock art!

3. Four Seasons

I found it very difficult to make mosaic portraits like the ones above, actually (and am in awe of all those brilliant artists who have that as their metier!). So, for my next project I decided to go back to "crazy paving" stuff.

I had one of those tinklingly annoying windchimes in my possession, given me by a friend, with a sun and moon theme. I loved the look of it but the sound drove me crazier than usual, so I never really displayed it. I decided to take the scissors to it and use the pieces in mosaic instead.

This made the theme quite obvious to me. My first challenge, though, was to figure out what to do with the centre hexagon that had suspended all the chimes. I came across a rather deformed looking piece of blue glass in my pile and ... eureka!A globe!!! (I won't tell you, however, how much stained glass I "destroyed" trying to get North America made... !!! SIGH).

And the rest should be rather obvious:


(check out the setting sun. Deep, eh?! heh heh)... and...

(everyone's favourite) Old Man Winter

I'm actually very happy with this piece and it is displayed prominently in my apartment. I took it to a show and tell craft party last Christmas and someone offered me $500 for it! The fact that greedy little me didn't snatch the $ before she could change her mind and run is testament to how much I like it, I guess.

And, finally:

4. Crazy Melon Plate

This was based on possibly the ugliest plate I have ever seen, which I scored at Goodwill. Too bad I don't have the original photo. It has onions in the corners for some unknown reason.

So, of course, I immediately thought of watermelons! (at least, in the grout colour choice):

I originally intended this to hand on the wall so that I could look into it whenever I was feeling down about my appearance and get a laugh. However, it's very heavy and I'm paranoid. So, these days, it sits on the dining room table, usually covered in cigarette packages with phone numbers scrawled on them (my version of the Filofax), keys for the storage locker, and other detritus.

So - this one, although I like, I would part for if offered $500. Any takers?!