© 2019 by Josh Levin

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What Comes to Mind?

When people think of “Mosaics” they think of story telling masterpieces on Church walls, inlays on table tops or decorative designs on floors. Mosaics appear on the walls and floors of grand palaces, historic buildings, and the sidewalks of Paris, Venice and Ravenna. These mosaics are one dimensional. And yet the master skills of the artists result in amazing perceptions of depth and shading. Most of my works are in relief form. Portions of the mosaic lift out of the background creating  a 3D representation.The pieces are framed in floating box frames. Some pieces require Plexiglass frames to protect viewers from getting hurt from touching the sharp projections. My relief technique is rarely seen in mosaic art works.I love how it adds depth and drama to the subjects. I also love how light penetrates the layers of glass creating many variations of color and dimension.

Materials

Josh does Mosaics as an art form to depict portraits, figures or landscapes. He uses various materials such as Smalti, Stained Glass, ceramic tile and various materials such as bottle glass, crushed stones and porcelain. The process begins with a subject. Then sizing. Then a specialty board is cut to measure the size that matches the proportions of the subject. Sometimes the board is treated with acrylic paint to provide a background color should there be areas of gaps or translucency. The intended subject is drawn onto the board. The materials are then selected for every color and texture desired in the final piece. Containers of each material and color are created. Sometimes a color or product needs to be purchased. These materials then need to be cut into smaller pieces which are then cut further to fit like a puzzle into every spot on the “canvas”. Each piece is carefully selected, cut further and set into place with tools and a bonding material. Piece by piece, color by color, step by step the image comes to life on the board. Because these are not meant to be outside pieces and because Josh is looking to create depth and texture, his pieces are done in a “relief” style. Meaning they are raised out of the “canvas”. As the piece comes to completion further enhancements, definitions, accents are added. In some cases nail polish is used to create an effect that cannot be achieved with the mosaic materials alone.See the raised relief Technique to create "texture" in these close up images of the boa.