Most of my mosaics are what you would call Pique assiette. It’s a style of mosaic that incorporates pieces of broken ceramics, plates, cups, tiles and other found objects into the design.
The basic idea is an old one, the Roman mosaicists used this technique hundreds of years ago. I like using found objects because they lend a mystique, the unknown, stemming from that part of their history that has to be guessed at. Also, it’s the story and chance of events that allowed them to be found.
For me, hunting for materials is an important part of the creative experience. I’ve collected most of my broken china, pottery and seaglass off the beaches and ports in various locations around the world but most of it comes from remote areas of Scotland and Ireland.
I’ve spent countless hours scouring these beaches and ports looking for objects that most people wouldn’t even notice but, as they say, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”
The current importance given to recycling means that creative use of discarded materials has a feel-good factor attached to it and makes a positive statement. I like both of those ideas.