MosaicBlues: May 2016 .entry-content { font-size:25px !important; }

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Mosaic Portrait - Natalie & Aaron

Early in May I completed a Portrait of 2 good friends of mine :

Natalie & Aaron by frederic lecut mosaic ~ 25" (63 cm) x 28" (70 cm)
Aaron & Natalie, mosaic on Cement backing board 25" (63 cm) x 28" (70 cm)

This piece was a present from Natalie to Aaron for their 10th anniversary.

I have known Natalie and Aaron for a long time. They had invited me to their wedding, and I had done a portrait of their children a few years ago. Now Natalie wanted their own !

She provided me with some recent pictures...

I rearranged to get their heads closer and create an actual model without a background. 

Knowing that Aaron liked Bamboos ...

I played with the colours of this image to create several projects...

I shared with Natalie

It took about 3 weeks to design the model and define the colours...

And I finally went to work...

Mid April,  the main piece was ready for its frame...

The addition of a brilliant Murano glass border was a little tricky, but finally...

By the end of April the whole piece had been flipped, cleaned up and grouted...

This mosaic is made of 8 mm recycled glass tiles. The portrait itself is made of black, white and 4 shades of grey tiles, while the colourful bamboo background uses 14 different colours !

The main mosaic portrait, made of small 3/16" glass tiles is encased in a brilliant cobalt blue mosaic made of much bigger murano glass tiles.

Roman Musivarii were using the same kind of technique. Extremely detailed "emblemata" mosaics were created by master craftsmen in dedicated workshops, then shipped to their destination anywhere in the Empire where local artists would incorporate them into bigger works.

Bacchus Emblemata, Rome, 2nd century AD

The process of clearly defining a commission mosaic can be lengthy when people live in different places. It took about 3 weeks of communication with Natalie to find what would really please her. 

Good communication between Artist and Collector is important, because you do not get a mosaic as you would a hamburger or a pair of shoes. It will stay with you for a long time, and hopefully in your family for even longer ! 

I want to make sure I understand my collectors' desires, what they need, what they are looking for in a mosaic. If I can, I go to the place where the mosaic will be displayed to get a better feeling about the place, the light, the ambiance. This kind of preparatory work is important to create a good fit between artist and collector !

I am a modern mosaic artist with a deep admiration for ancient Greek, Roman and Byzantine Arts. You can see some of my own mosaics on my site mosaicblues.


If you are interested by my work in general or if you would simply like to drop me a line, 
please contact me by email at
or by phone at (334) 798 1639.  
You can also

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Packing a Mosaic for shipment

Mosaics are heavy and must ship in sturdy boxes. I build mine from wood, and encase the mosaic inside with insulation foam. 

I shipped last week "Mary's Cheeks" a glass only piece measuring 18 x 30", 1.5 thick, and weighing 25 lb. 

This is how I built its crate :

I used :

Materials :
  • Luan plywood,
  • 1 x 3 whitewood boards
  • 1/2" insulation foam
  • wood glue
  • 3/4" wood screws - or 1 1/2" nails

Tools :
  • Miter Saw - or hand saw.
  • Cordless drill with screwdriver bit - or simple screwdriver
  • Measuring tape.
  • Box cutter.
  • Hammer

The first thing to do is determine the size of the crate.

As I used 1/2" insulation material, I added 1" on each dimension to find the inside dimensions of the crate.

The mosaic being   : 30 x 18 x 1.5"
It came up to          : 31 x 19 x 2.5"

To figure out the outside dimensions of the crate, you have to add the thickness of the boards you are using.

I used 1 x 3 boards for the sides. Now, as (only in America)  a 1 x 3 board measures 3/4 x 2.5", I added twice the thickness of my boards (2 x 3/4" = 1.5") to get the outside dimensions of my box.

Which were now        : 32.5 x 20.5 "

This was also the size of the Luan panels for the bottom and cover of the box.

So I cut :
  • 2 boards 31" long
  • 2 boards 20.5" long
  • 2 luan panels of 32.5 x 20.5"

I built the frame from the boards, and used one of the luan panel as its bottom.

The box and its cover.

I secured the bottom to the frame with wood glue and 3/4" screws.

Detail of the assembly of the bottom to the frame.

Laid one sheet of insulation at the bottom of the box, 

The came mosaic on top of it and I protected its sides with strips of insulation material.

I covered it with a last sheet of insulation foam.

And finally screwed the cover onto the frame with 3/4" screws. 

Et voila...

The whole package weighted 35 lb, meaning the crate itself was 10 lb. It shipped by UPS to New York State and arrived in perfect shape to its recipient, who had no problem opening it. 

I am a modern mosaic artist with a deep admiration for ancient Greek, Roman and Byzantine Arts. You can see some of my own mosaics on my site mosaicblues.


If you are interested by my work in general  or if you would simply like to drop me a line, please 

contact me by email at   

or by phone at (334) 798 1639.  You can also

Friday, May 6, 2016

Dothan Eagle Article

Just wanted to share with you this cool article about the Show Made in Alabama hosted by the Wiregrass Museum of Art.  I feel very honoured to have been chosen to be part of this exhibition, in company of 7 other very talented artists.

"Made in Alabama"

Exhibit puts spotlight on Alabama Art. 


By Peggy Ussery - Accent writer - The Dothan Eagle

Friday, May 6, 2016


"Grenadier Tree of Life" by artist Frederic Lecut,  

From Butch Anthony’s funky creations to Katie Baldwin’s woodblock prints and Cal Breed’s glass sculptures, the collection of Alabama art currently on display at the Wiregrass Museum of Art covers a variety of mediums.
“Made in Alabama” will be at the Wiregrass Museum of Art through June 25.

The eight featured artists are not all Alabama-born, but they all currently live and work in Alabama. The exhibit was timed with the Alabama Department of Tourism’s Year of Alabama Makers, a marketing campaign highlighting the state’s craftspeople, musicians, writers, designers, artists and even brewers, distillers and food producers.

“Alabama’s known for food, music and, of course, sports,” said Lara Kosolapoff-Wright, the museum’s communications coordinator. “I think people are amazed when they learn about all the incredible artists who are nationally-known, internationally-known, living in our state.”

Here is a look at the eight artists in the Dothan exhibit:

Butch Anthony, Seale
Folk artist Butch Anthony is known for his bizarre creations that often incorporate found objects. He has a drive-thru museum off U.S. 431 in Seale, just north of Eufaula, as well as the Museum of Wonder containing found oddities. For a price, you can have a plaster cast of a supposed Bigfoot footprint or a feather from the World’s Oldest Chicken. On Fridays, Anthony hosts the Possum Trot junk auction.
On his website,, Anthony clearly states that he only builds “weird stuff.”
His mixed media pieces on display in the “Made in Alabama” exhibit include prints of the famous “Pinkie” and “Blue Boy” paintings with Anthony’s odd touch ‒ skeletal drawings over the paintings.

Katie Baldwin, Huntsville
A printmaker and book artist, Katie Baldwin used a traditional Japanese woodblock technique, known as moku-hanga, to create her pieces on display at the Wiregrass Museum of Art. An assistant professor of art, Baldwin teaches printmaking at the University of Alabama in Huntsville.
As an artist, Baldwin has exhibited in Tokyo, Japan, as well as Philadelphia and San Francisco. Her work is also in permanent collections, including the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.

Doug Baulos, Birmingham
Dictionary pages, porcelain, thread and found objects are listed as the materials used in Doug Baulos’ piece “White Winter Wreath.” It’s a large piece comprised of multiple objects, including a semi-circle of birds clinging to the wall.
Baulos is an assistant professor of drawing and bookmaking at the UAB College of Arts and Sciences. In his work, he uses pages from old printed dictionaries, which are decreasing in numbers with the shift to online dictionaries. The pages become nests for birds and wreaths in Baulos’ art. His work is described as a reflection loss, mortality and memory.

Cal Breed, Fort Payne
With 20 years of working with glass, artist Cal Breed finds inspiration for his blown glass sculptures in the natural world.
His pieces in the “Made in Alabama” exhibit include “Walnut,” a very large glass walnut (juxtaposed with the real thing), a glass-and-enamel pieced called “Pineheart,” and the lunar-inspired “Wax and Wane.”
“It’s like the moon and a dinosaur egg all at the same time,” Kosolapoff-Wright said.
Breed and his wife, Christy, opened Orbix Hot Glass in 2002. There, the artist creates both his art sculptures as well as functional pieces such as pitchers, vases and bottles, ornaments and paperweights.

Natalie Chanin, Florence
A clothing designer from Florence, Natalie Chanin is the founder and creative director of Alabama Chanin, a company known for its sustainable practices and described as a company based on “slow design” principles.
Alabama Chanin uses organic cotton and creates clothing designed and sewn in Florence. The business also features a store that sells home products such as kitchenware, aprons, cookbooks, bedding and ceramics. A café serves lunch and dinner. Workshops are held throughout the year, catering to sewers and crafters.
Chanin’s pieces featured at the Wiregrass Museum of Art are hand-sewn organic cotton jersey. In a rich indigo color, the fabric features hand-stitched designs.

Frédéric Lecut, Headland
Born on the northern coast of France, Frederic Lecut moved to Alabama in 1992. He began working with mosaics in 2003 after meeting a mosaic artist in Provence. In that time, Lecut has used his skill on community projects and public art installations.
Lecut created his pieces “Red Scarf” and “Grenadier Tree of Life – Alchemy” with colorful tiles for an almost stained-glass appearance.
Along with Lecut’s own mosaic art, the exhibit includes workshops hosted by the Wiregrass Museum of Art on May 12 and May 26. Attendees will produce smaller pieces to be used in a larger installation.

Miriam Norris Omura, Birmingham
Born in England, Miriam Norris Omura weaves and unweaves images taken from photos to give her pieces their impact.
The artist uses family photos as well as found photos for her dyed woven portraits, sometimes even incorporating the original photo into the woven work.
The result is striking. Omura weaves the image from a photograph, unweaves it and then weaves it again for a blurred double image. The portraits have the ghostly feel of a faded family photograph.

Debra Riffe, Birmingham
A Tupelo, Mississippi, native, Debra Eubanks Riffe uses her linoleum block relief prints to depict African Americans in rural Southern scenes. Inspired by the Mississippi of her youth, Riffe’s prints of everyday life stand out against the white printmaking paper she uses for a canvas.
She has collaborated with Amos Paul Kennedy Jr. on a project about civil rights activist Fannie Lou Hamer.
Riffe’s work is featured in the permanent collections of the Freedom Rides Museum at the Historic Greyhound Bus Station in Montgomery and at the National Historic Landmark 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham.

I am a modern mosaic artist with a deep admiration for ancient Greek, Roman and Byzantine Arts. You can see some of my own mosaics on my site mosaicblues.


If you are interested by my work in general  or if you would simply like to drop me a line, please 

contact me by email at   

or by phone at (334) 798 1639.  You can also