E-News for Fall 2011
Something New at THF!
Here's Who We Are
Ehling's Mastery of Mosaic
Cal Art Re-Creation
L'esperance Tile Works
China Painters Sought
Lincoln Park Bench
For quite some time the Tile Heritage Foundation has ‘desired to aspire’ to selling lovely collectible contemporary art tiles from member artists as a permanent feature of the THF website. VISIT! This special ‘Tile Store’ page is now a reality and showcased. ART TILES are a wonderful gift to give all year long! Tiles are offered by individual THF member artisans in support of the Tile Heritage Foundation. Selling a specific tile at this site where a percentage of sales support THF is open to all current THF members who make tiles. Email: email@example.com for details on how to participate. We are looking forward to offering a large array of beautiful tiles!
Brechelle Ware hails from Twisp, Washington, commuting to Healdsburg every six weeks or so for a 10-day stint at Tile Heritage. Formally Bre is the Collections Manager - informally the “Queen of Done” as she is forever completing tasks of an infinite variety. For the past three years, perhaps more, her primary focus has been overseeing the digitizing of the Foundation’s slide library. This task is now complete, although the metadata must still be added to each image. Currently, there are 35,455 images in the Aperture database, over 20,000 of which are from slides: 12,300 of contemporary artists and artisans and historic tiles; nearly 5000 of installations in the U.S. and nearly 3000 of foreign installations. Support the ARCHIVES with a donation? Click here!
Dale no longer messes about with clay; when she has time, she dabbles in paint and pastels, imitating her favorite subject: nature. However, most of her time these days is consumed by teaching art to challenging but lovable teenagers at a continuation high school. Time to renew your membership? Click here!
Alistair has worked on creative projects across many types of media for over 15 years -- combining interactivity, video, and motion graphics to create rich user experiences. As a designer at Wells Fargo Bank, he works with his team to create various multimedia for the corporate online bank. When working as a freelance designer, he combines traditional graphic design, 3D animation, video, and motion graphics to create high impact visuals for clients ranging from non-profits to commercial organizations. There are Volunteer Opportunities with Tile Heritage - email us! firstname.lastname@example.org
Jennifer E. Capps, Curator at the Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site, 1230 North Delaware Street in Indianapolis, emailed Tile Heritage in September:
I am doing some research on tiles in front of a fireplace at the Benjamin Harrison Home. The photos, in black and white or sepia in color, are from 1888 and one slightly earlier. Would you by chance have a suggestion of color by looking at the tile pattern? We do have original wallpaper from this room and the original marble mantel. I have attached a couple of photos showing the original tiles and a modern photo showing what the mantel and room look like today. We are hoping to put back tiles to more closely resemble the 1880s photos.
Jennifer, I think we can help: One would have to assume that the original hearth tiles were produced at the United States Encaustic Tile Company in Indianapolis. From a poor photocopy of a circa 1890 product catalog from this company, we have scanned the cover of the catalog, the first couple of pages that describe the tiles, and lastly a page with a hearth illustration (No. 161) that closely matches the original one in the Harrison house. As you will appreciate from reading the description in "Plain or Geometrical Tiles," your hearth tiles were geometrical (also referred to as
geometrics) and the colors of the tiles are right there for you to choose from
From Nancy A. Rankin, AIA, LEED AP
John G. Waite Associates, Architects PLLC
New York, NY www.JGWAarchitects.com
Yours is a "faience" tile produced by the American Encaustic Tiling Company, most likely in its factory in Zanesville, Ohio. A "faience" tile is one manufactured in the U.S. to look like a handmade tile, which it is not. These tiles became especially popular during the 1920s in reaction to the handmade tiles of the Arts and Crafts movement in this country. It's a beauty and Hartford Hall is gorgeous!
George Ehling's master work is embodied in his home in the Hollywood Hills, which he bought in 1967. The house was built in 1927, the same year Ehling was born. George Ehling, a former professional wrestler, actor and carpenter for the movie studios has been creating mosaics by hand throughout the house for 40 years. Like Watts Towers’ Simon Rodia, Ehling also uses found materials such as wine and beer bottle bottoms and tiles people have thrown out. He then cuts the discarded materials down to size to create the tesserae he needs for his intricate tile work.
Ehling has left almost no part of his home untouched. Inspired by Roman, Byzantine, Renaissance and Moorish mosaics, the tile work ranges from simple, repetitive motifs to complex portraits (including a self-portrait). Colorful, elaborate ceramic inlays decorate the arches, columns, and ceilings, all done by hand, all designed by the self-taught artist. Click for more of the story
Cal Art Re-Creation
David Vargo is a professional sculptor/ceramist. His personal work incorporates dogs interacting in human environments—his work can be found in several major collections and museums. He also teaches ceramics and sculpture. In a prior life Sandra Cosner was an art director who designed print collateral for a variety ofclients and nonprofit organizations.
Inspired by the array of fireplace mantels in the Tile Heritage Foundation’s Summer E-News, the couple emailed with a mantel of their own making: a complete re-creation of a California Art Tile Company mantel from the 1920s. The original fireplace, which was located in Petaluma, California had been ruined by an earthquake and subsequent water damage. The homeowner’s insurance generously covered the cost of remaking these vintage tiles!
And Winged Dog Tile has the molds if anyone is interested in a replica of this Cal Art fireplace. Visit the website.
L’esperance Tile Works: Sure-fired Beauty
By Akum Norder
The century-old tiled fireplace stood out like a broken tooth. Its central design was supposed to be a three-tile panel of a reclining Roman soldier, but the first tile -- the soldier's head and chest -- was missing. The team restoring this California home asked: Could Linda Ellett, founder of L'esperance Tile Works outside of Saratoga Springs, re-create the missing tile? Read the whole story . . . and scroll down at that link!
Seeking Images of China Painted Work
Paul Lewing www.paullewingtile.com and www.paullewingart.com
The mosaic mural was designed and directed by ceramicist Joan Gardiner of Unison, Virginia and Gale Bowman-Harlow of Opus Oaks – An Art Place -- for the Barns of Rose Hill Center in Berryville, Virginia. The “Shenandoah Life” mosaic, measuring 14’ wide x 8’ high, the most significant permanent art installation in The Barns Center, is visible upon entering the facility. Images of the Shenandoah River and Blue Ridge establish a background for the terra-cotta figures that refer to the visual and performing arts, each one assigned to a favorite local artist. The project brought together Opus Oaks students, interns and teachers along with many others
volunteers from the local art community. The mural was dedicated on October 9, 2011.
California Street in San Francisco rises as it approaches its western terminus at Lincoln Park, meeting a set of concrete steps dating to the early 1900s that lead up to Lincoln Park in the Richmond District of the city. Thanks to the Friends of Lincoln Park, there is now a beautiful new tiled bench that greets you as you ascend.
The bench is the most recent creation of mosaic artist and tile maker, Aileen Barr, already recognized in San Francisco for the award-winning 16th Avenue Tiled Steps at Golden Gate Heights (see www.tiledsteps.org), which she created with Colette Crutcher.
The bench represents the first of three phases of this neighborhood restoration. Pillars on either side of the steps will be tiled next followed by the tiling of the stair risers. An inspired look at the overall project including a schematic drawing of the proposed pillars and risers can be seen by clicking here. And for a closer look at the spirited artist, see Aileen Barr.
Stonehaus Workshop on Whidbey
The talented team of Peter King and Xinia Marin from Stonehaus in Pensacola, Florida engaged a group of clay enthusiasts for a 5-day architectural ceramics workshop on Whidbey Island, directly following a Potters Council conference in Seattle in late June 2011 where the esteemed couple had been presenters. The workshop was hosted by Carol Rose Dean, Dean Tile and Design, on Whidbey Island.
Peter and Xinia are extremely dynamic instructors, and a 5-day workshop is barely long enough to get a handle on the myriad clay techniques they use to make their pieces.
Special thanks to Carol Rose Dean, Dean Tile & Design and to Claudia Riedener, Ixia Tile Tacoma for providing the pictures.
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