George Ehling Mosaic House
I met George Ehling and his family in 1998 in a chance meeting at a historic mosaic venue in California. Thus began an enduring friendship that allowed me to interview, photograph and offer tours alongside Ehling over many years. He acquired the Mediterannean-style mansion in 1967 and proceeded to totally transform both interior and exterior with Roman, Byzantine, Medieval and Islamic ornamentation. Every surface contains scraps of scavenged tiles and collected bottles riffing on ancient visual patterns. After working on the home for 45 years, George passed away in 2016 at age 89. The home remains a private residence. I developed and maintain the George Ehling Mosaic House Facebook page which has 3000+ fans, please follow the page for updates. See my blog for more. Featured in:
Featured Presentation: “God Sees Me – George Ehling’s Mosaic House”, for Society of American Mosaic Artists, annual conference, Nashville, TN, 2019
Andamento Vol. 9, God Sees Me- George Ehling’s Mosaic House in Hollywood, California, British Association for Modern Mosaic (BAMM), pg 12-21 + front inside and back covers, 2015
RawVision #85, Releasing New Archetypes, pg 54-57, 2015
SPACES archive, essay and photos
Mosaic Assoc. of Australia and New Zealand (MAANZ) e-magazine, Pattern Play, vol 15, 2016
Following on my investigation into women working in midcentury modern mosaic, I have had the honour to interview, write and present on the fascinating tale of UW professor emerita Marjorie Kreilick, with a focus on her ten large scale, yet little-known, mosaic murals for Milwaukee’s State Office Building. In 1961, commissioned by the State Architect, Kreilick offered her radically different vision for using monumental mosaics to celebrate the indigenous landscape. Documenting Kreilick’s artistic journey from Rome to Wisconsin and her important contribution to modern muralism within the architectural setting, I assist Ms. Kreilick and her estate to support acknowledgment, acquisition, and preservation of her legacy.
Lecture / Video ‘Modern Women: Trailblazers in Mid-20th Century Mosaic’, for The British Assoc. for Modern Mosaic, BAMM/Edinburgh, 2017, available on YouTube
Andamento Journal : ‘No Dames: Marjorie Kreilick’s Mosaic Murals in Milwaukee’, Vol 12, 2018, British Assoc. for Modern Mosaic (purchase journal at BAMM)
‘Trailblazing Women’, Mosaic Assoc. of Australia and New Zealand (MAANZ) e-magazine, November, 2018
Lecture: Madison Public Library, Women’s History Month: ‘Hiding in Plain Site: Marjorie Kreilick’s Midcentury Mosaics, March 2018
‘Common Ground: Landscape Mosaics at the Wisconsin State Office Building in Milwaukee’, Society for Commercial Archeology, SCA Journal, Vol 37, No.2, Fall 2019 read excerpt
The Lod Mosaic
Through indepth study of the ancient Roman pavement excavated in Lod, Israel, I discovered a three-dimensional Archimedian solid (specifically, a stellated great rhombicuboctahedron) that could be fashioned from the inherent geometry found in the central panel, along with findings of significant esoteric and archetypal symbolism. The massive mosaic toured the world’s top museums while a visitor center was under construction in Israel.
Lod 2.0 Above and Below: my original research on Vimeo
Lod 2.0 Above and Below: Keynote Lecture on YouTube for BAMM
Lectures, Tours, and Visiting Artist Educational Programming for:
Legion of Honor: Museum of Fine Arts of San Francisco
The Field Museum / Chicago
Chicago Mosaic School
King’s College London for BAMM,
Waddesdon Manor / UK for ASPROM
Anthony Stellon Brotherhood of Man
I initiated preservation efforts to protect and restore a 1968 smalti mosaic mural, Brotherhood of Man by Anthony Stellon (1941-2005). The mural shows two figures, one black one white, uniting above the green Earth, Sun and Cosmos, conjoined by the infinity symbol. The mosaic panels, commissioned by Mayor Joseph Alioto, were originally located at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Recreation Center in Hunter’s Point. Stellon was so moved by King’s assassination, he felt compelled to respond with his artwork as a call for universal peace and respect. This work is part of the San Francisco Arts Commission Civic Art Collection, and was re-sited to the Franklin Square Playground after a long public process undertaken by Friends of Franklin Square to revitalize the park.
I began studying the works of visual artist, Millard Sheets (1907-1989) upon moving to Califorina in 1994 where his midcentury commissions can still be found at many Home Savings Banks. This led me to work with Denis O’Connor, (1933-2007) who fabricated over 80 large-scale mosaic murals for Home Savings. When O’Connor passed away, I assisted his estate to have his collection acquired by the Huntington Library in Pasadena. I’m a resource for valuation, research, and photography of Sheets’ architectural works and preservation case studies. Adam Arenson, author of ‘Banking on Beauty: Millard Sheets and Midcentury Commercial Architecture in California’ cites my research in his award-winning book on the subject.
Lecture: Millard Sheets and the Tree of Life: A Case Study in Northern California presented at Creative Collaboration – Honoring Millard Sheets: Master of Art & Design, Scottish Rite Masonic Center, San Francisco, CA, with Tile Heritage Foundation, Gualala Arts, and the Stone Foundation.