Artists express themselves through their art, whatever that art form may be, and many create a signature style that is recognised immediately.
Painters, Pablo Picasso and Andy Warhol are two that spring to mind. You can just about always pick their style and will hear their pieces spoken about as ‘that’s a Picasso or that’s a Warhol.’
Mosaic art on the other hand can be whatever you want it to be.
Historically, mosaics was a form of picture, capturing life through tesserae and leaving behind a legacy or story, often with great meaning and always with much beauty.
It may be too soon for legacy, but mosaics today is definitely about story and beauty.
Some will determine a style and others will simply break and stick and allow the design to unfold as it goes. Either is fine.
There are no rules.
Mosaics is, after all, about breaking something and then compiling it into something new and very often beautiful.
Wellness and Mosaics
Mosaics is a wonderful activity that can nourish your creative wellness; because being well, is much more than simply not being sick.
Often, life will get in the way of undertaking soul/spirit nourishing activities.
How many reading this perhaps didn’t join dance-yoga-bridge (insert any activity, you have thought about doing) because you’re just too busy? Or you wanted to do the wine and paint course, but just couldn’t find the time?
You’re not alone. It happens a lot. Yet, our overall wellness suffers as we need to feed our creative. We often need to get out of our intellectual/rational heads and into soul warming, nourishing activities where we get lost in the moment. The getting lost in the moment is referred to as mindfulness.
Mosaics and Mindfulness
Mosaics is one of those activities. Apart from crafting a beautiful end product, the whole process simply feeds your soul; from the design, choosing colour, cutting, smashing, sticking… to the final grout and polish and satisfaction of a job well done.
Often, there may be no specific design in mind when embarking on a mosaic piece. Or, there may be an idea but what tends to happen it changes and unfolds as you go.
Mosaics and Mandalas
The substrate (the thing you wish to mosaic onto) can take many forms.
When learning it is likely a board (round, square or oblong), an old table from the garden or a planter pot; all good beginner pieces.
A 30cm round piece of board is the perfect substrate to create fabulous mandalas that can be used as either wall or garden art or as a trivet (something to protect a table or bench top from heat).
What is a mandala?
Mandala’s are symbolic figures representing life, love and the universe. And according to Carl Jung (Jungian psychology) in a dream, they represent the dreamer’s search for completeness.
Mandala’s tell a story, even if we don’t consciously start out with that story in mind.
Jung says, such events are not mere coincidences at all, but what he called synchronicity or meaningful coincidence.
The Magic of Mosaics
Mandalas in mosaic designs creates magic; whether it be a single mandala as a trivet … OR an entire tabletop (mandalas within a mandala) as shown in the pics below:
The following are similar round (800mm wide) tables (a mandala itself) but with the mandalas placed differently. On one table the design has unique circles and on the other the mandalas are overlapped, which creates a 3-d effect.
The meaning or story of each mandala can be derived and different for each of us, and that’s the beauty (excuse the pun).
It is the beauty contained within the beauty.
Let’s have a go.
Let’s create a story with the red framed mandala with a sun or star as shown below:
The red border determines passion.
The six point object is referred to as a hexagon and is steeped in meaning and symbolism. A six-point object can mean love – life – loyalty – knowledge – wisdom – understanding.
Given it is surrounded by green (grass – earth) triangles (the power of 3, holy trinity, ancient wisdom, mystic-ness, an energetic gateway, the sacred feminine – masculine energies, resilience – as it is self supporting) and immersed in yellow (sun – energy); a story does unfold.
The story of the hexagon mandala
So, in essence the story of the mandala above could be — a blue (calm) hexagon, depicting love, life, learning (knowledge), that sits within green triangles, grounded and resilient, immersed in the glory of the sun’s energy and surrounded by passion.
How nice to ponder your mosaic piece and to be reminded of the story and the value of being in the moment?
What do you think?
The Making Mandalas Workshop is coming in 2020; watch this space.
Contact Di, if you would like to chat.
Some more pics, just because you can never have too many mosaic pictures: