This illustrated talk will trace the introduction of mosaic in the buildings of progressive American architects around the turn of the twentieth century. Architects’ collaboration with craftspeople resulted in a new language for using mosaic in their designs and provided a unique canvas for experimentation in the decorative arts. These installations created over a century ago stand out among the highest achievements of this once-ancient art form.
Mr. Ellison will describe in his lecture the work of the Chicago firm, Giannini & Hilgart, Frank Lloyd Wright’s favored studio for the creation of his residential fireplace surrounds. Seattle tile distributor William Kellogg was the sole regional distributer of their glass mosaics, which may account for the stunning iridescent gold fireplace mosaic in the Pierre and Laurena Ferry residence (1903-1904) on Capitol Hill, designed by John Graham, Sr. and Alfred Bodley. The nearby William Bloch residence (1908) by Arthur Loveless contains another example by Giannini & Hilgart.
Theodore Ellison Designs creates original leaded glass, mosaic, and lighting for new construction and historic homes all over the United States. With a keen attention to detail, his company works collaboratively with homeowners, architects, and designers to deliver one-of-a-kind pieces. Mr. Ellison is a longstanding member of Artistic License, a guild of professional revival artisans working in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Cost: $25 Members / $35 General Public
Photo: Closeup of fireplace mosaic by Giannini & Hilgart. Credit: Ted Ellison.