Tuesday, July 1, 2008
Mosaic is the art of creating images with small pieces of colored, glass, stone or other material Small tiles or fragments of pottery (known as tesserae, diminutive tessellae) or of coloured glass or clear glass backed with metal foils are used to create a pattern or picture.
Mosaics of the 4th century BC are found in the Macedonian palace-city of Aegae, and they enriched the floors of Hellenistic villas, and Roman dwellings from Britain to Dura-Europos. Splendid mosaic floors are found in Roman villas across north Africa. In Rome, Nero and his architects used mosaics to cover the surfaces of walls and ceilings in the Domus Aurea, built AD 64.
The mosaics of the Villa Romana del Casale in Sicily are the largest collection of late Roman mosaics in the world and are protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Other important examples of Roman mosaic art in Sicily were unearthed on the Piazza Vittoria in Palermo where two houses were discovered. The most important scenes here depicted Orpheus, Alexander the Great's Hunt and the Four Seasons.
The floors of Roman buildings were often richly decorated with mosaics, many capturing scenes of history and everyday life. Some mosaics were bought 'off the shelf' as a standard design, while the wealthy villa owners could afford more personalised designs. Some of the finest Roman mosaics in Britain can be seen at Fishbourne Roman Palace and Bignor Roman Villa.
Romans were using basic elements of design in patterns of dots creating line tone and using colour to make it look 3 dimensional imagery and border pattern that surrounded people animals gods, nature, angels, cupids, creating exquisite art works and images, they not only did these mosaics on the floor but on ceilings walls entrances motifs. All these marvels were made from basic materials. Inspiring building a design for many future generations past and present.