School Mosaics & Community Mosaics

with Joshua Winer, Artist and Teacher

Working on community mosaics is an exciting and fascinating experience, with many opportunities to learn. I'd like to share some of my insights into the value and meaning of this rewarding work. This is my philosophy behind the work.

The Importance of Beauty in the World

Beauty inspires us, nurtures our spirits, and gives us joy. We all respond instinctively to beauty in nature, and also to beauty in our built environment. When we have beauty in our environment, we care more about our physical surroundings, about ourselves and about our community. When we make mosaics and install them on walls, we are enriching the quality of our lives.
Building Community by Working Together

Shared group experience creates a cultural memory that is lasting and meaningful. Individuals see themselves and their groups in new ways as they learn together. When a collaboratively made mosaic finally is unveiled , the sense of pride and ownership is empowering to the community as a whole.
Lasting Learning With Your Eyes and Hands

The mosaic art form provides exciting opportunities for visualization and hands-on learning. We learn by using our eyes to observe and our hands to make. Step by step we see our work move forward, starting with cutting tile to define outlines, then mastering skills of placement and detailing. In each of step, the eyes and hands connect for a lasting learning experience.
We Are All Teachers, We Are All Students

Creating mosaic murals requires knowledge, skill and experience, yet each of the steps is straightforward. Individuals master techniques and hand skills through practice and repetition, then they teach the next person. Adult volunteers learn to supervise small groups of students. Students teach their classmates what they have just learned.
Striving for Excellence

My role in this effort is equal parts artist, teacher, coach and facilitator - but the achievement in the end rests with the work of each participant. With group mosaic projects, each person finds work that they like and are good at, and then make their own contribution. The collaborative nature of the work brings out the best from each individual.
Turning a Vision Into Reality

Each new mosaic project starts as a vision. We have come together to share a great community experience. Our goal is to achieve the fullest potential of community artwork, both in the process and in the final work of art. In turning this vision into a reality, we give a gift to ourselves and to our community.