Mosaics are at least 4,000 years old, with examples of the art found in ancient Mesopotamia, where pieces of coloured stones, glass, clay and other materials were used to create patterns and pictures. The Greeks developed mosaic art and the Romans took it to classical heights in Africa and Syria, the wealthiest of the Roman provinces. The mosaics preserved in Roman villas in Britain impress us today, although the Romans considered the work in this outpost of the empire crude compared with those in Herculaneum and Pompeii.
Some modern mosaicists working in the UK make up for the shortcomings of those in the classical world and examples of this work was on display in the Mosaic Showcase of the Hard Surfaces 2019 exhibition co-locating with the Natural Stone Show in London at ExCeL..
Mosaic artists make full use of the plethora of hard surfaces available to them today, just as they always have done.
The Mosaic Showcase was presented under the auspices of the British Association for Modern Mosaics (BAMM), which is this year celebrating its 20th anniversary, having been established in 1999 by a group of artists and art historians who wanted to pool their knowledge and promote mosaics.
BAMM is a membership organisation that encourages an interest in all aspects of modern mosaics – that is, mosaics made in Britain since the mid-19th century. Today, its membership of about 350 comes from all parts of the mosaic world and includes mosaic artists, art historians, teachers, hobbyists and suppliers.
BAMM members receive, as part of their membership, Grout Magazine, which is published three times a year, and an annual scholarly publication called Andamento, as well as monthly e-newsletters that keep them up to date with news and forthcoming events.
British Association for Modern Mosaics (BAMM)
Below a selection of Mosaic art
“Quintessence” by Ivan Djidjev
“Angels and Devils” by Ivan Djidjev
“Tezcatlipoca” by Laura Symes
“Head” by Gary Drostle
“Soldier” by Gary Drostle
“4 Plinths” by Norma Vondee
“Figure” by Norma Vondee
“Vestige” by Julie Fallon
“The Blues” by Tracey Cartledge
“Octopus” by Tracey Cartledge
“Table” by Cinde Lee