Facts About Mosaic Art

Save

Mosaic is a form of art that uses small pieces of material, such as tile, beads, paper or stones, arranged in a specific pattern. This pattern is designed to make up a larger image composed completely of the tiny material patterns.

History

  • Mosaic art dates back over 4,000 years. The art form initially began with the use of terra-cotta cones pressed into a background and different colored stones to create basic decoration and patterns. In the fourth century B.C., Greeks modified and improved the art form by creating images of people and animals. By 200 B.C. specially made tile pieces called tesserae, which were only a couple of millimeters in size, were used in mosaics in place of stones and pebbles. These typically square pieces were small enough to create detail and range of color.

Influences

  • The Byzantine Empire had a large influence on the characteristics of mosaic art from the fifth century onward. The Byzantines used tiny pieces of nongrouted glass tesserae called smalti from northern Italy that allowed light to pass through. The glass was placed at varying angles, bouncing the light off one another to create an eye-catching shimmer.

Religious Use

  • In western Europe, Islamic mosaic and tile art was introduced by the Moors in the eighth century. These pieces of art contained mainly mathematical and geographical images. Even though mosaic art became slightly unpopular by the middle ages, the expanding tile industry increased demand for mosaic tiling patterns in religious buildings by the 19th century. Many of the Islam and Christian mosaics still can be seen today in mosques and temples around the world. These religious institutions mixed with the introduction of mass tile production launched the trend of decorating floors with mosaics.

Variants

  • The Art Nouveau movement of the 1890s also showed interest in mosaic art. By the 20th century, Catalan artists Antoni Gaudi and Josep Maria Jujol invented a technique called trencadis, which utilized broken tiles and shards of crockery to cover the surface of architectural designs.

Modern Examples

  • Today, mosaic art remains fresh with continuous new ideas and approaches from both famed artists and independent crafters. Many creative individuals use mosaics for home furnishings, interior design, gallery art projects and more. Modern artists, such as Martin Brown, have used mosaic to create portraits of famous artists and even tables inlaid with tiles.

Related Searches

References

  • Photo Credit shell mosaic image by Chris Bibbo from Fotolia.com
Promoted By Zergnet

Comments

You May Also Like

  • Five Facts About the Metropolitan Museum of Art

    Located in Manhattan, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, often referred to as the "Met," is one of the most renowned art museums...

  • Interesting Facts About Greek Art

    Introductory art history classes in colleges and universities study ancient Greek art because of its impact on subsequent art movements. While Greek...

  • Facts About Roman Mosaics

    Throughout the Roman Empire mosaic artistry was an industry in its own right, with geometric patterns widely used for architectural enhancement. While...

  • Characteristics of Roman Mosaics

    Mosaics are designs or pictorial representations made using small pieces of colored stone, marble or a glass specially manufactured for the purpose...

Related Searches

Check It Out

12 Tiki Essentials to Turn Your Bar Cart Into a Tropical Paradise

M
Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!