Tiny Mosaics

Johannah has been exploring a new-to-her technique of setting tesserae (mosaic tile) directly in mortar, rather than gluing tiles and then grouting over them. This is the method used to create the ancient Byzantine and Roman mosaics, as well as an ever-growing body of gorgeous work by modern mosaic artists. She's created a line of miniature pieces in this technique using reclaimed and found materials alongside traditional smalti, a thick opaque glass.

{Click any image to enlarge.}

Working in groups or series is a great way to explore an idea from multiple angles. The top two photos are pieces that center on a found object. The tiny dolls in the top left poke fun at the unrealistic body imagery our culture has for women and men alike. The shape of the found object itself is the focus in the three pieces in the top right photo.

The series in the bottom left photo are miniature landscapes: snow shadows, a drop of rain in a puddle, and a view of kudzu overtaking a rusty train bridge. Finally, the series in the bottom right plays with all sorts of ideas: texture, pattern, color, and negative space, just to name a few!

These last two series started out as lines created from reclaimed terracotta pottery. These pieces are all about the material: the soft color and rich texture of the terracotta, as well as the way the terracotta plays against the bright blue and green reclaimed ceramic and soft gray of the concrete.

You can find a limited selection of these tiny pieces up in our Etsy shop

Introducing: Lucia Metal Studios

Etsy has been such a great online home for us that we've opened a second shop! This one is dedicated to Kyle's small-scale handforged home goods. You can still find collaborations with Johannah, furniture, and many customer favorites in the Phoenix Handcraft Etsy shop. The new shop is metal only, a place for Kyle to experiment with new product ideas and designs.

Here's a peek at some the items you'll find at LUCIA METAL STUDIOS. Stop by and tell us what you think! 

Among the very first new items Kyle created for the shop was a set of drink coasters in forged steel and cork with a forge steel stand. Protect your surfaces from water rings with clean, modern style. Win win! Next came a set of forged stainless steel kebab skewers. The set of skewers includes six different designs, and best of all, they're dishwasher safe!

Meet the new Altamont Bracket! Heavy duty mantle brackets (above) and the lighter duty shelf bracket (below). Traditional rivets and hammer-texturing plus Kyle's classic clean style give this modern bracket a timeless feel.

And that's just the beginning. Kyle is churning out the new ideas and we're regularly updating the shop. Stay tuned for lots more to come!

7th Annual Art Scientifique

Johannah is excited and honored to have two pieces accepted into the 7th Annual Art Scientifique, hosted by Chris Sorenson Studio and sponsored by California State University Fresno - College of Science and Mathematics. 

A little bit about the show: "Art Scientifique was created to celebrate the beauty that is often found as the result of scientific inquiry. This unique crossover show represents work not only from artists but scientists as well. The artwork displayed represents the wide and diverse nature of science from Astronomy to Zoology and everything between."

The mosaics by Johannah in this show are "Mitosis/ Cell Division" (top) and "Rod & Cones/ Photoreceptor Cells" (bottom). The show opened this week and runs through the end of March. If you happen to be near Fresno, CA this month, stop by and check it out in person!

Mitosis/ Cell Division by J Willsey 2016
Rods and Cones/ Photoreceptor Cells by J Willsey 2016