How The Mosaic Appeared

How The Mosaic Appeared
How The Mosaic Appeared

Video: How The Mosaic Appeared

Video: LaunchPad: Making Ancient and Byzantine Mosaics 2022, December
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The word "mosaic" comes from the Latin musirum (a work dedicated to the muses). This is a type of monumental art in which images and ornaments are collected from pieces of multi-colored stones, glass (smalt), ceramics, etc. and are fixed on an ad hoc basis.

How the mosaic appeared
How the mosaic appeared

It is believed that the mosaic originated in Mesopotamia. At that time, it was composed of cone-shaped baked clay sticks. They were painted red, black and white. However, there are significant discrepancies regarding the time of its occurrence.

More reliable information has been preserved about antique mosaics. In ancient Greece, the floors of wealthy houses were covered with mosaics of untreated pebbles. Contour images of people, animals and mythical creatures, framed by geometric or floral ornaments, were laid out in white on a black background. The heyday of ancient Greek mosaics fell on the Hellenistic era. At this time, the technique of pinning pebbles arose, and also colored glass began to be used, due to which the images became more realistic, and the color gamut was almost limitless.

In ancient Rome, the walls and floors of palaces, country villas and baths were decorated with mosaics. Smalt (small cubes of melted colored glass) was first used here, but many mosaics were still made from pebbles and small pebbles. Of great interest are the mosaics of Hadrian's villa in Tivoli. A very beautiful mosaic depicting 4 doves sitting along the edges of a bronze bowl. Its edge is decorated with a garland.

Mosaic art reached the peak of its development in the Byzantine Empire. Byzantine mosaic looks very refined and sophisticated, striking the eye with the subtlety of the layers and the perfection of the forms. In the early mosaics, the figures of Christ, Our Lady and the saints were placed against a blue sky. Later, gold became the main background color, symbolizing the radiance emanating from the saints. Sets of smalt and semiprecious stones were not polished. Due to the heterogeneous surface of the mosaic walls, light was reflected in them from different angles, creating a mysterious shimmering effect.

On the territory of Kievan Rus, the art of mosaic appeared only in the 10th century, after the adoption of Christianity. However, at first it did not receive much development due to a lack of material. In the 11th century, smalt production was established in Kiev, which caused a short flowering of mosaic art. The most large-scale and perfect creation of Kiev masters is the mosaics of the Cathedral of St. Sophia. After the collapse of the centralized state, the mosaic gave way to a fresco, as it turned out to be too expensive for the appanage princes.

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