Saturday, August 15, 2009

Tile art

We came across this mosaic project in a sort of scrubby side yard between houses during a walk. I wonder if it’s a work in progress, and what it will become?

Speaking of tile art, we got a great book through the library about historic Portuguese azueljos, titled “Portuguese Decorative Tiles: Azulejos”. The patterns are incredible, and we were also fascinated by the surreal quality to some of the scenes depicted.
Examples: A tableau of cats being taught to sing, and being “treated” by monkeys (there are vials of potions, surgical tools in the scene). A trompe l’oeil of fish hanging on coat hooks in a kitchen. An unusual depiction of the death of Dido (with a bonfire and a rainbow). Human bodies transforming into vases. Life-sized figures of guards in a hallway or entrance. And many allegorical, religious, historic, and mythological tableaus.

This website about Portuguese azulejos is excellent; like a book online.

And there’s always Wikipedia.


Anonymous said...

cosmos of city
blocks -
scale: hundreds
of yards
to an inch? in this
near our home,
a fado mosaic
in this city
where passion hides
under bland beige facades
passion clears its throat
becoming coloratura

Katie said...

Fabulous! Of course you already knew I'd love this photo because of the mosaics, but now I'm completely fascinated by the link to the azulejos. I can't wait to go through all those amazing photos. How fun to find beautiful art in amongst a scrubby side yard. Anon I very much enjoyed your ode to this little scene.

Ms M said...

Katie, I did think of you when I posted this photo :) And I was thinking that you posted a card about azulejos on your blog some time in the past. I'm fascinated by that link on azulejos, too, and plan to take some time going through it.

And Anon, I also enjoyed your verse very much :) Thank you!