Sunday, June 20, 2010

Waltzing Mithila

Sky, Earth and Water
Monalisa Jha

I am forever searching for simple designs to incorporate into my mosaic or other mixed media work. Of late, I have been attracted to the indigenous art of the Mithila people, one of the ancient traditional arts of North India.

Dulari Devi

Mathili art was originally practiced by women on the interior walls of their homes. Popular legend dates the beginning of this art form to at least 5,000 years ago when, at the marriage of Sita and Rama, her father King Janak decreed that everyone should paint their homes with gods and goddesses to celebrate the happy occasion. (We should do that here in America!)

Women's Plight
Rani Jha

In the late 1960s Mathili artists began painting on paper as a means of earning a living. This soon led to experimentation and an expansion of the subject matters. Generally, this type of art captures the everyday lives, the rituals, festivals, social lives of Mathili people. The growing interest in this folk art form also encouraged some men begin to practice what was traditionally considered a women's art. Today, the art flourishes in the villages around the rural town of Madhubani in north India.

Pond Life
Pinki Kumeri

Women Mithila painters outnumber men by a large margin. Hindu gods and goddesses are still common subjects, but the repertoire now also includes popular stories, legends, local and even international events, autobiographies, and contemporary social and political issues.

The First Time to Market - and she is nervous
Pratik Prabhakar

The internet, television and other media that lend a hand in the globalization of art has done much to aid in the popularity of Mithlian folk art. Today, once can find it on hand made Lokta papers and on hand made cotton clothing. Contemporary Mathlia artists have begun to use modern brushes and acrylic paints as opposed to the ancient, home made inks of old. With the new media exposure, market value for Mithili art has been increasing steadily. Fortunately, a growing number of women artists are able to earn decent a income from it, not to mention the rich cultural addition it lends to Northern India.

At the Pond in the Rain
Kiran Jha

At this time, Norbertallen Gallery in downtown Los Angeles is planning an Mithila Art in an exhibit called, “ An Indian Survey of Mithila Art”. It will run from July 8th through August 31.
Animals in the Forest
Laxmi Devl

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


I have corrected the link to Christine Moss' web site, but for those of you who receive this via email, the url is:


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Joyful Mosaics of Christine Moss

My blog seems to generate a lot of fan mail, for some reason. I find reading these emails a great way to meet people and to be introduced to new artists, one of whom is mixed media artist, Christine Moss.

Christine’s mosaics are created with a view toward uplifting the spirits of those who view them. Through her art she strives to convey joy (hence her studio name, “Joyful Mosaics”) and to connect with that which is Divine. She is mindful of the time it takes to create a mosaic and of the experiences of time expenditure, patience and positive energy that a good piece of art entails. . Her art seems to be as much about the discipline and appreciation for the technique as it is about the finished work.

“When I create mosaics, I am searching for a certain quality of light, texture and color. I am after dream-like realness; that moment when you first wake up and are aware of your surroundings but are still within your dream.
Christine Moss

Christine Moss considers mosaic to be a rewarding medium from the very beginning when she sets out to find the perfect tessarae to express what she wishes to convey. She loves the tactile experience of cutting and arranging each piece and working the soft granular grout between the spaces and pays close attention to replicating and transforming the shapes found in nature into her own joyful signature artwork.

A recent resident of Woodstock, NY, Christine creates her mosaics on the main street at the edge of town where she reserves a work space in the back room for painting, grouting and sculptural pursuits. She claims the move has helped broaden her artistic horizons. However, she hasn’t always worked in a dedicated studio.

“When I lived in Jersey City, I worked out of the kitchen and the living room, wherever there was enough open space and light to see. I had a system of trays and panels that I worked from. Glass was everywhere. It was an organized chaos, not something I could really share with others.”

Christine teaches workshops and enjoys sharing the creative process with her students who range from senior citizens in the Big Apple and Jersey City, to public school children in Newark where she was an Artist in Residence at the Newark Museum.

She is a member of the Visionary Artists Collective at Varga Gallery and sells mosaic jewelry at the gift shop for the Brydcliff Artists Guild. She also sells her work on Etsy. She has built a number of large installations and is available for commissioned work.

Later this month, Christine will participate in the NY Faerie Festival where she will offer not only her mosaics, but a variety of other types of art work including sculptural forms, and jewelry that she makes from found sticks, woven with ribbons, leaves and feathers and embellished with wires and stones.

Please visit Christine Moss’ Joyful Mosaic web site: HERE

Stacy Alexander