Mosaic School




Located in the Normal Heights community of the

City of SAN DIEGO, California, USA

Mosaic Workshop 6

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Learn the fine art of mosaic technique and methodology taught by internationally acclaimed mosaic artist KIM EMERSON who has been creating mosaics since 1991.

The mission at the San Diego Mosaic School is to educate and inspire everyone about the medium of mosaics as a fine art.  Every level of mosaic experience is welcome.  All you need is a passion for color, texture, an openness for creativity, and originality.   We focus on cutting, placement of “tesserae”, basic design composition, and comparing ancient Roman and Byzantine mosaics to the contemporary styles while using many different types of beautiful materials.  Our workshop studio is located in the Normal Heights community of San Diego, California, USA.

KIM EMERSON is a San Diego based artist who specializes in the medium of mosaics. Her work is large-scale, architectural, environmental, in the form of 2-D murals, 3-D sculpture, small format jewelry, and fine art studio creations. Kim has a lifetime of experience in the visual arts, with a BA in art history, an MS in historic preservation of architecture, and an AA in interior design. She is a natural educator with the ability to reach students at all levels of their experience. She has created and installed many public art and private residential projects. Her work can be found in private art collections throughout the United States. In 1991 Kim began learning and making mosaics with internationally acclaimed artist James Hubbell as a volunteer building schools in a very poor barrio of Tijuana, Mexico. She crossed the US/Mexico border from San Diego every week for three years to work and create involving members of the community from both sides. Kim has been an active “professional” member of the Society of American Mosaic Artists (SAMA) since 2004.

Each mosaic art workshop includes all materials, use of professional tools, an extensive list of where to purchase mosaic supplies, 14 hours of serious instruction, AND a deli-style lunch!

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Descriptions of current Mosaic Art Workshops:


DECEMBER 1st & 2nd  Full!

Saturday & Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Create a glass-on-glass style mosaic using transparent tesserae with texture that can ultimately hang in the frame of a window that casts vibrant colors and light!  All the tesserae for this workshop will consist of everything transparent in glass: stained glass, dalle de verre (French meaning “slab of glass”), glass dishes, and more!

The prerequisite for taking this workshop is that you have already taken at least one Spontaneous Mosaic workshop with Kim.  The design approach for this workshop draws upon the philosophy of Ilana Shafir. 

We will not be grouting in this workshop.  The clear panel substrate upon which you will adhere your transparent mosaic will be a rectangle.  You will decide if your transparent mosaic will be horizontal (landscape) or vertical (portrait).  You will be invited to use power tools to cut unique shapes and drill holes into your panel.  It will be expected that you are willing to cut your tesserae using the various techniques and tools made available to you.  Hammers and hardies with more will be available. Hanging wire to display you finished mosaic will be provided.

ABSTRACT in SMALTI (Multi-mini panels) – $300.

DECEMBER 8th & 9th  Full!

Saturday & Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Smalti is glass and it is the only material traditionally fabricated especially for mosaics.  It was invented by the Romans and perfected through the ages by the Italians.  Smalti as glass has been especially designed to be cut with a hammer and hardie (chisel), the 2000 year old Roman metal tools invented to cut stone and smalti.  By example, the colorful and shiny tesserae of smalti is what is seen from the Byzantine Era in the churches of Venice, Rome and Ravenna, Italy, and more.

The prerequisite for this workshop is that you have already taken the Spontaneous Mosaic Method workshop with Kim Emerson.  You will be designing your mosaic composition while utilizing the intuitive design philosophy of Ilana Shafir, and working with tinted thin-set “directly-direct”.  In this workshop we will be cutting and creating with smalti from both Italy and Mexico.  We will be discussing and sampling the unique characteristics and differences of each.  You will be encouraged to cut all of your tesserae with the hammer and hardie, or wheel nippers, to create a composition that is abstract incorporating both “normal “A” cuts’ and “pizzas and/or tortillas”.  The size panels (on wood for interior) will be no larger than 8” x 8”.  We will NOT be grouting in this workshop.  Smalti is not typically ideal to be or traditionally grouted.

Tis the season!  For this particular workshop only, attendees will have the option of creating up to three small gift size mosaics in smalti just in time for the holiday season!

Mosaic Art by BarbaraMosaic Art by Kathy