Address Plaque Workshop, Upcoming Shows, and Classes

A great time was had by all as we toiled away in the heat this July weekend just prior to the wildfire season start up. Although we had one emergency cancellation just before class began, we still had plenty of good energy to make this a great creative gathering. A few newbies joined in with some old hands (literally and figuratively) and we had a wonderful class overall. Some folks already had address plaques they liked at home, and so opted for “plain-ol'” mosaics.

HA! As if there’s such a thing!
Here are some pics of the process and the final outcome of some of the work. Plus BELOW, some info. about upcoming classes and shows!

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I have a beginners mosaic class coming up this October 1st and 2nd during the Contemporary Mosaic Art Summit in Ashland, OR at Southern Oregon University.

We’d love to see you there for the workshops, but don’t forget the lectures by international mosaic artists. There’s also an Invitational Exhibit at the Thorndike Gallery at SOU, where I will have the 2 pieces shown here for sale:imag.landscape.lgViewfrom9F.lg

and don’t forget the wonderful Mosaic Exhibit and Silent Auction at Belle Fiore Winery on Thursday Oct.1st from noon until 6pm. There will be so many wonderful smaller treasures as well as larger works for purchase- and it’s a ONE DAY ONLY event.  Here’s the piece I’ll have there for sale:

beneaththesurface.lgCome meet the artists, enjoy the views, buy a glass of wine to sip while picking out your favorite piece! I hope to see you there!

The Horses of Equamore Mural Project/Artists for Equamore

I can’t believe how much time has passed since my last post, but life has been FULL! Work on the mural continues pretty much everyday and I am doing my best to try and get it up on the wall before July. (But no promises! I can only move so fast.) Keep your ears open for announcements of an unveiling event! It should be a fun one, as Equamore really wants to help me celebrate this with the community of Talent and the Rogue Valley. More on this below.

While working on the mural, I and my friend Lynn Adamo finished and installed the Booker T. Frog sculpture (the T. stands for “the”) on his new mosaic lily “pad” at the McMinnville Public Library at the end of April. (See earlier progress post) We had lots of help from friends to make this work just right. Everyone was excited to see Booker again and even more excited to see the mosaic brighten up the entrance to the library. You can read more about it and see photos over at Lynn Adamo’s great blog post: http://www.lynnadamo.com.

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I have to say I had no idea how many steps would and could go into creating The Horses of Equamore mural. I have done similar work before of course, but each project somehow seems totally different and new. I love a challenge, and rarely tackle anything that isn’t one, but this project turned out to be sort of a reverse-engineered mosaic, which is way more complicated than I originally thought it would be.

Rather than starting with pieces and putting them together to make a whole, I started with big slabs of clay (about 32″ x 24″) and cut them up to create the pieces. 20150517_181721Then those pieces were cut down further to create more and smaller sections. Then those sections were deeply scored to create spaces for grout lines so once filled, the lines would create the illusion of a true mosaic. I keep calling it a faux mosaic, but really it isn’t, it is turning out to be tens of thousands of pieces! 20150518_115420I also carve into the clay to create the critters, landscape, etc. by first tracing my template directly onto the leather hard clay.

20150518_175909Because I am designing grout lines into the pieces, I also realized I’d need to protect those grout lines from the shiny clear glaze I’m using on the rest of the pieces. In order to do that I have to hand wax every single grout line and edge of every piece after it is bisque fired and washed.

It sometimes takes an entire day just to wax a single half section. 20150520_205955However, my hope is that the rough texture of the bare clay will ensure the grout will grab and stay in the grout lines (xx= fingers crossed

I’m using underglazes to create the color on the panels. This is a bit more predictable than regular glaze, as the color applied looks somewhat similar to reality once fired. Regular glazes usually look nothing like the color they are — so what goes on green can come out blue, or what goes on pink can come out green. It’s a little maddening and for me too difficult for this type of work.First panels

Here’s a side by side comparison of underglaze before firing, and after firing with a clear coat on top.

To date I’ve completed about 19 feet of the 27 foot total! The next sections are in the kiln with another one awaiting bisque firing. The finish line is in sight 🙂

While that’s happening, I’m trying to create some work for the special fundraising event going on at the Equamore Foundation on Sunday May 31st. It’s called Artists for Equamore and looks like it should be a great deal of fun. I’ll have garden art, ceramic tile plaques, possibly some new mosaic jewelry, and more!artist event smOver 20 local artists (check out the above link), live music, wine, food, and really great horses! What more could one ask for? Even if it rains we’ll be doing it up in the arena area, so don’t give me any excuses. We need your help to make it a success! 20% of all sales are going to the horses – so come on out. 3-6pm.

Frog finds a new home (or the creation of the Lily Pond Mosaic)

Wonderful world! My friend and fellow mosaic artist Lynn Adamo and I applied for a large public art project in McMinnville, Oregon last year for a new bus station/rerouting center.

Well, we didn’t get that gig, but luckily for us, one of the folks who was present for that selection process saw and liked our work. They have hired us to do a different project for the McMinnville Library renovation that is happening now! We, of course, said “YES!”

frog3It all started with a bronze frog sculpture that was gifted to the library some years ago.

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This cute contemplative frog is being relocated because of the renovations. He needed a new home, and we were being hired to create it!

The client requested a mosaic “pond” to be sited in an existing planter bed close to the front doors.

Bed_angled corner1Now… Lynn and I live at opposite ends of the state. We weren’t really sure how we were going to do this, but this is what we decided.

I did the design, color lily pad v4

and she did the in person meetings (since she’s far closer to McMinnville) and got a full sized copy made of my design. We chose and ordered tiles with lots of back and forth, online and on the phone.

And then Lynn made the cutest maquette ever!

Screen Shot 2015-02-18 at 6.59.29 PMTo begin the hands on part, we met up in Bend, at our friend Rochelle’s awesome studio Wild Rose Artworks (thanks Rochelle), to split the materials and layout the full size cartoon onto mesh.

Next we tiled along the imaginary center line, then when it was set over night, we cut the mesh into two large halves and brought them back to our respective homes to work on them.

20150206_162511So far, this is how it’s going on my end.

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I am also on the search, via a rock hound friend, to find the perfect rock for the frog sculpture to sit on in the center of the pond.

Fingers crossed!

In addition to all this great work that’s finally going on, I was accepted into the Rogue Gallery 2015 Biennial! The show is a collection of works from artists of the Rogue Valley. Please check it out when you can, it opens Feb.20th (from 5-8 pm) and will run through April 10th 2015.

Hope to see you there!

Time for the Art for the Home & Garden Show and Sale!

Well a true spring has finally come to the Rogue Valley of Southern Oregon, and I have been working hard to create several new items of art for the Art for the Home & Garden  Show and Sale that I hope you will enjoy in addition to some tried and true favorites.

First, mosaic jewelry.

2014-03-31 14.16.17 2014-03-31 14.23.12 2014-03-31 14.21.54   Beautiful handcrafted tiny works of art to decorate your already awesome selves. I have selected beautifully crafted silver plated and solid copper bezels as my substrate, then I cut teenie tiny bits of glass, ceramic tile, semi precious stones and Italian millifiore and Mexican smalti to arrange artfully and tastefully within the bezel. After adhering these pieces and allowing them to dry, I grout them all in with a nice deep charcoal grout. Now they are ready to wear to impress your friends. I get noticed every time I wear mine! I have a large selection of one-of-a-kind pendants to choose from.

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Mosaic pendants by Miss Mosaic (red oval with hearts has been sold)

Next, I’m in the process of creating ceramic flowers to adorn your gardens.

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Ceramic and steel garden art flower BEFORE glaze has been added.

I start by rolling out and stamping wet clay, allowing it to get close to leather hard before cutting it into shapes sort of like making sugar cookies, but without the handy cutters (still need to make those). After they have dried for a few days, I bisque fire them then will coat them with glazes that capture the beautiful textures, and refire to a higher temp (2100F). Afterwards, they’ll be ready to stack into colorful flowers and place onto their “stems” of steel, with leaves welded onto them.

In addition, I made a large beautiful mosaic butterfly, suitable to hang indoors or out.

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Garden art butterfly by Miss Mosaic

These will brighten your garden or home no matter what the season!

I also have art for your home too!

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Mosaic birds for your home by Miss Mosaic

Cute little mosaic birds I created can decorate your walls to bring a little bit of nature inside and brighten up a room. These I made by cutting MDF board out in bird shapes I sketched out, then sanded and sealed with Kilz to keep out air moisture. Next I hand cut bits of glass tile and adhere to the base, grout them up, paint them again, and wha la! Happy little birds 🙂

If none of this has grabbed your fancy, I also have my ceramic plaques and beautiful sgraffito carved bowls (my favorite below) and possibly more fine art mosaics to liven up your home and bring a little handmade love into your lives.

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Sgraffito bowl by Miss Mosaic- side view

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Inside a sgraffito bowl by Miss Mosaic

I hope to see you at the sale in person- I will be doing my work shifts between 12:30 and 3pm on Friday and Saturday, so if you want to chat, that’s a guaranteed time to catch me, up at Mary Dee’s on Prim. I look forward to catching up with those of you I haven’t seen in a while, and visiting more with those I see more often.

The sale is easy to find- just take Wimer St. up to the top crest of the hill (off of N. Main St. in Ashland, OR). A map and flyer are here: AFGshow Come celebrate the wonderful creativity this valley has to offer right on your doorstep, support your local artists, and enjoy a wonderful day exploring!

If you can’t make it to the sale, please don’t hesitate to contact me here or by email at missmosaicgirl@yahoo.com for sales or commissions of my work! And share this with your friends to help support me! Thanks everyone!

December is here already?!

Whew! what a crazy busy time last month was!

The 38th Annual Clayfolk show was a resounding success and I want to thank all of my supporters for coming out to make it our best year ever.  I was honored with the front page of the Medford Mail Tribune’s Tempo this year, and I have no doubt it helped me immeasurably.1

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My platters came out great- and I was able to do a trade with my friend Julie Young for wonderful photographs of my work. Here are a few:

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I totally enjoyed myself and did well in sales to boot. Bonus. However, I’m still trying to recover my energy to move on to new endeavors. I think the adrenaline is what took me through last weekend-and this week has been a long crash.

My first order of business after the show was to clean the house (which had been let go for far too long) do some laundry, and create the class description for my next workshop: Mosaic LOVE. I hope some of you can join me for this fun and informative class!

heart2Mosaic LOVE: A Class for Beginners of All Things Mosaic with Karen Rycheck

The mosaic art form is experiencing a resurgence all over the world – and you can be a part of it! Come get a taste of this dynamic and versatile art form while making a fun valentine gift for your sweetie, your mom, or yourself! We will be creating a small project to whet your appetite and give you the basic skills needed to begin creating in mosaic. Your first three hour session will be cutting and laying tesserae (pieces), the second one hour session will be grouting and finishing your piece.
Saturday February 1, from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm, and Saturday February 8,              from 11:00 am – 12:00 pm

$50 Members, $60 General
All materials provided
Ages 13 +
Click here for the registration form
Please register by Tuesday, January 28
Questions? Email karaQlewis@gmail.com

Or peruse the Ashland Art Center class schedule on their site at http://www.ashlandartcenter.org

This could make a unique Christmas gift for someone, or a fun activity to do together- so grab a friend and sign up NOW.

I’m also going to move my potters wheel indoors for the winter, so I can continue to practice and create more good looking bowls, yet still be warm and comfy. I gave away my futon couch on Craigslist-took less than 16 hrs. for it to disappear-to make the space for the wheel. Now I just need shelves for the work! One can never have enough shelves it seems. So if anyone wants to help transform the bedroom into an annex studio-give me a call 😉

Coming soon- the fictional downtown of Bedford Falls (from Frank Capra’s classic film It’s a Wonderful Life) in CAKE. By yours truly. I have to admit to loving food sculpture-as long as it isn’t taken too seriously. But I do like a challenge, and this will prove to be one. Stay tuned for that adventure.

I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving and were able to give thanks for the wonderful lives we all have. Even when I’m whining and struggling I am always grateful to my clients, readers, friends, and family; without whom my life would be dull, dull, dull. Thanks everyone!  xxoo

Clayfolk is coming!

Well it’s that time of the year again- The 38th Annual Clayfolk Show and Sale is on the horizon. I’ve been spending days and nights non-stop creating new work for this year’s show so I hope to see a lot of folks there.

The platters I wrote about in my last post came out beautifully and I’m excited to get them out in the public view.

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The last batch of small bowls also came out great. I hope folks like these as much as I do!

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I’m getting some professional photos taken this week and looking forward to seeing what she does to make these look more appealing. I’ve never been the greatest photographer which seems ironic, but I guess we all have our weak spots!

In addition to prepping for Clayfolk, I was busy making and wearing my best Halloween costume to date- and it was all free! Gotta love that 🙂 I went as Sacajawea- Lewis and Clark’s guide to the west. She had a newborn infant strapped in her papoose the whole journey! What an amazing strong woman she had to have been to deal with all those white guys and a little baby to boot. Anyway, here’s the costume:

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Yep- that’s Raggedy Ann standing in for the infant! And my friend Sara hanging onto my boat for dear life! It was a fun party- and dancing in a boat is way fun. Really rockin’.

I also made some new “furniture” for my booth yesterday- plate holders from scratch. I got bamboo off-cuts from a friend and purchased dowel rods that I cut and sanded, and borrowed a drill press from another friend to make all the evenly deep holes for them. Only took an hour or so- and they turned out perfectly. I love when stuff works the way you want it to! I’m also creating a pedestal out of cardboard and putting a wooden top on it for sculptural pieces. I never seem to have enough surfaces for all the work I want to show!SAMSUNG

 

In addition, I created 8 “busts” to display scarves for our next show over at Talent City Hall, “Celebrating Textiles and Fashion”. We have 14 artists displaying their works for the next 2 months. Our first invitational show, and a really nice spectrum of types of work too. Hope some of you get to see it! It will be opening Nov. 13th and run through Jan. 10th 2014. 

Well- back to it. Just wanted to let you know I’m still out here working away! Hope to see you soon- or just keep checking in to see what’s next on my agenda.

I’ll be creating another crazy cake for the “It’s a Wonderful Life” party in December, as well as creating a new custom mirror project and possibly a new mosaic for the Upper 5 Vineyards here in Talent- a wonderful biodynamic vintner. Stay tuned.

This week with MissMosaicGirl

I started off the week getting all of my bowls sprayed with a clear glaze. This is what they look like after spraying with a clear top coat- all snowy white and matte looking.P1000471

But then comes the glaze firing!

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 Temperatures of over 2100 degrees are reached to achieve a “high fired” product safe and durable enough to survive the dreaded microwave, the dishwasher, and even the oven if you’re careful.

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The colors really POP once the glazes have developed in the intense heat. It takes about 8 hours for the temps to get up to cone 5, and another 12 plus hours for the kiln to cool enough to open up and take out the treasures. So cheery! Loving these!

Only had one fatality, but it was one I really liked 😦P1000476 But it’s to be expected, as it is ceramics after all…

1385698_664801226872564_1643781070_n Things continued to go really well as Friday night found me at Illahe Gallery for the Mosaic Invitational and I had a chance to catch up with other mosaic friends and meet new ones as well.

My friend Julia Janeway showed up with her lovely family and her daughter Josephine was convinced she could hear sounds coming from Mosaic Town! 1377318_664801276872559_489237443_n

We decided “Totoro” was playing in the cinema building… but I’ll let you decide.

I spent a few hours on Saturday helping to install the mosaic medallion I created almost a year ago for my friends Pete and Carol here in Talent, Oregon. Pete had already installed the handmade tiles on the risers as well as putting in lovely slate on the steps and porch.SAMSUNG

The install went smoothly and we’re just waiting for the thinset to cure before removing the clear adhesive film I used to create it. I think it looks great with the multi colored slate, and the small border Pete added really adds the finishing touch.

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I’ll post final photos once everything has been grouted, but Pete and Carol seem pleased and I think it looks fantastic at their place! You can read about making the tiles here and here.

In addition to the install, I also was working on a new platter for the Clayfolk show coming up next month. I’m experimenting with new patterns that relate to, but are different than, my bowls. What do you think? Keep in mind- the colors will change. Gray will become white, blue will be a deep turquoise, and the black will get blacker once fired.SAMSUNG

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Whew! I’m tired just looking at everything that went on. Time for a long nap.

Upcoming shows include my Artwork

Oh my god this has been a busy summer and now fall…I can’t wait to catch my breath, but there’s no end in sight until after The Clayfolk Show coming up November 22nd-24th at the Medford Armory on Hwy. 99 just off exit 27. Anyone wanting to take me to a warm sunny locale, just drop a line. I’m ready! SAMSUNG

I’m working on some new functional pieces since I’m learning to throw on the potters wheel, and I hope they’ll be well received. SAMSUNG These bowls are in the greenware stage-unfired and unglazed. The colors will change dramatically before they’re completed. The pastels will become deep reds and bright yellows and glowing greens. The outsides will become black and white. It one of the cool things about doing ceramics. You can’t tell until it comes out of the kiln on the final firing what it will look like. That’s part of the mystery of clay work. SAMSUNG

In the background is my reclining nude chaise lounge called “Eve”. It’s temporarily taking up space in my studio and serving as another shelf! Lol. I would love to sell her… anyone interested should contact me NOW! I need the studio space back and she needs a better home.

Stay tuned for updates on the progress of these new works as November draws nearer.

While going back and forth to Portland I was also working on some new garden art to be shown this October at the Illahe Gallery in Ashland, Oregon. The pieces shown will be the Mosaic Town I created this summer and blogged about earlier.  The opening reception will take place Oct. 4th from 5-8 pm for the First Friday art walk in Ashland. Come on down to Illahe at 4th and B Street and meet me and other great mosaic artists from the area and check out the variety of types and styles that mosaics can offer.

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Shows & Events                                                   October 2013
Gallery Newsletter
Historic Charles Nininger Building
215 Fourth Street
Ashland, Oregon  97520

 

 OCTOBER:

We are happy to bring an eclectic group of nine skilled mosaic artists to the gallery this month for our Third Annual Mosaic Invitational.   Each of these artists skillfully takes the craft of mosaic in a unique direction and form, from furniture to wall hanging to outdoor sculptural works.  Join us for the Artists’ Reception, held during Ashland’s First Friday Art Walk on October 4th  from 5~8 p.m.  Enjoy a late summer evening stroll with other art lovers and meet the artists.  Wine and light refreshments will be served along with the music of Jef Ramsey.

THIRD ANNUAL MOSAIC INVITATIONAL:

Joanne Chase

Kory Dollar

Tina Ellis

Jennifer Kuhns

Jill McAlvage Smith

Penny Meads

Mimi Near

Karen Rycheck

Wilma Wyss

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“Phalaenopsis” Joanne Chase

First Friday Artist Reception

Friday, October 3rd 5-8 pm


“Resonance” Joanne Chase: ::::: :

 

JOANNE CHASE

I love to immerse myself in all aspects of the world of plants, growing edibles and ornamentals, walking amongst wild flowers, harvesting for food and medicine. Orchids are amazing flowers with such complex and unlikely architecture. Our local natives are miniscule and grow from the ground while tropical orchids such as I’ve recently seen in Panamaattach themselves to trees and have bigger, showy flowers. They all delight me and have inspired this body of work along with the notion of resonance, something that evokes a strong emotion, such as these flowers do for me.

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“Zahara, Goddess of Dance” Kory Dollar: ::::: :

 

KORY DOLLAR

Kory Dollar is a stained glass mosaic artist of Clark County Washington. She has been creating colorful mosaics for 15 years and is a self-taught artist. Kory uses a wide range of materials to create mosaics; she searches for unique bits and pieces that can be turned into treasures. She places bits of color and texture together to create elements in nature and fantasy. All of the items she creates are one-of-a-kind. She assembles each work of art one piece at a time, making every piece just right. Kory uses a broad range of materials, combining texture, reflectivity, and spacing to create her vision. Kory shapes the materials to fit like puzzle pieces, using modern tools. She is intrigued by mandalas, nature, and the human body. Her visions come from her surroundings; “I watch nature and people, studding movement, expression, tone, and light. My aspirations allow my imagination to create vivid themes and expression for others to interpret.”

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“Classic Ribbon Vase” Tina Ellis

TINA ELLIS

After representing glass artists to galleries for eight years, Tina found herself compelled to create her own artwork. She was inspired to work with dichroic glass because of its lively and reflective light transmitting qualities. The glass she uses is predominantly recycled. Tina hand cuts and fuses each piece of glass creating soft pillowed pieces for her mosaics. She also slumps some pieces of the molten glass to fit the form on which she is working.

This exhibit is a series of mosaic vases. Most of the vases are recycled period pieces. Tina’s work contrasts classical shapes with contemporary materials. She loves the way these contrasting elements play off of each other creating an entirely different expression.

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“Gimli” Jennifer Kuhns

JENNIFER KUHNS

My specialty is stained glass mosaic, with emphasis on use of reclaimed materials.  I collect stained glass scraps from leaded and fused glass artists, tiles are scavenged from contractors, tile setters, and salvage yards.  The bases for my fine art panels are leftover tile boards, cupboard doors, and old windows.

Throughout my life, faces have been the primary focus of my artwork.  If I’m stuck waiting in a line or at an airport, I entertain myself by sketching the faces of the people around me.  I love how different all of our faces are, and yet so similar.  The lines and contours of a face tell a story.  The arch of an eyebrow or clenching of a jaw can completely change a person’s expression.

While I have always enjoyed sketching realistic faces, I began to play with use of unexpected colors in my twenties, working in oil pastel.  From there, my faces became more and more whimsical as I also worked in linocut and collage, and when I discovered mosaic, I began by translating many of my earlier designs using tile and glass.

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“More Orange Bubbles” Jill McAlvage Smith

JILL McALVAGE SMITH

My sisters accuse me of having enough Scrabble tiles to write a novel. I don’t. But almost.

I am a finder, a collector, a bricoleur. Each of my artistic journeys begins with the hunt. I can be found most weekends haunting yard sales, imagining new lives for the dusty treasures I unearth.

I am passionate about creating my artworks using entirely salvaged and found materials (with the notable exception of adhesive and grout). My creative process begins with those discarded items. I am inspired by the challenge of transforming these rescued and reclaimed objects into meaningful works of art.

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“Rooster” Penny Meads

PENNY MEADS

Mosaic art creating for me is a form of mental therapy.  When working on a piece I can clear my mind of everything and find relaxation in creating a piece.  I have taught myself over many years and consider myself an advanced amateur.  When asked to describe how I do this, I describe it as having a vision and working backwards like a jigsaw puzzle.

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“Joy of Joys” Mimi Near

MIMI NEAR

I fell in love with glass mosaic the moment I encountered this intrepid art form in the Cathedrals of Europe at age 13. Using the technical skills I gained from being a journeyman tilesetter, the understanding of mosaic art from my studies inRavennaItaly and various art and design classes I set out to explore the inner and outer world of mosaic art. I create mosaics for Public Art Installations as well as private residence installations such as water features, sculptural interior or exterior pieces, bathrooms, kitchens, terraces etc. I also create what could be considered “Fine Art” that is hung as a painting would be hung in one’s home. The pieces I have created for this show have been inspired by a variety of things, my recent exploration of Spain, my love of the natural world and my absolute infatuation with the creation process.

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“Mosaic Houses” Karen Rycheck

Exploring different subject matters and concepts ranging from light to dark and whimsical to weighty drives my art making.

I begin a work with a general concept, giving myself space to develop the piece as I’m interacting with it. Allowing myself more room to play in my abstract work, I focus on design, texture and color as my guides.

Different materials call to me for each individual piece, so various types of glass, clay, stone, and metal as well as non-traditional materials such as CD’s and LP’s may all be found in my work. Choosing not to limit myself by material, I select my medium according to what sense I want to convey in the piece itself.

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“Out to Sea” Wilma Wyss

WILMA WYSS

The different settings and cultures that I’ve experienced are reflected in my mosaic work. My childhood was a multicultural gyre: I was raised by Swiss parents in the U.S. and Africa, and often felt like an outsider, spiraling between continental divides. I’m inspired by the lively, colorful ornamentation in African culture that often draws from nature, even as it collides in my art with the Swiss tradition of orderliness and precision-a collision I hope infuses my work with intriguing contrasts and a dichotomy of order and the unexpected. As a resident of the Bay Area for 25 years, I also feel a strong connection to the western landscape, and often integrate natural materials in my work, including river rock, pebbles, beach glass, fossils and shells. Color, texture and shape are key. I enjoy the technical challenges in creating my mosaic work, whether applying the mosaic to a substrate that I cast in concrete, build up an armature of wire mesh, or repurpose an old frame or ceramic roof tile.

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