Tile Heritage-ENEWS

(Available each month to Tile Heritage members who e-mail the Foundation from the address they would like
E-News sent to. Contact: foundation@tileheritage.org)     PRINTED VERSION

                          Here’s What’s Below:

                           Historic Handcraft Saved from Closure

                                       Artisan Tile Northwest

                                Coverings: they got us “covered”!

                                  CERF Update. Let’s not forget.

                                   Twin Ports Tile Map Granted!

                       MN Tile Conference: Preview of Workshops

                                     Tiles and Mosaics in Chicago

                           Coming next: More conference details!

Historic Handcraft Tile: Saved from Closure

There are only four tile potteries in the U.S. today that can claim longevity: Moravian Pottery and Tile Works in Doylestown, PA (1898); Van Briggle Pottery in Colorado Springs (1901); Pewabic Pottery in Detroit (1903); and Handcraft Tile Co. in Milpitas, California, just north of San Jose (1926).

Just a few months ago we reported that Handcraft owners Shirley Dinkins and Frank Patitucci were anticipating having to close the factory as each was needing to pursue other interests. Although the company was for sale, there seemed to be little hope that the right people would come along and save the historic company. In mid-April it was confirmed that new owners had in fact been found and the company would continue with the same production staff and product lines, tiles virtually identical to those made 80 years ago! Sarah Goodwin and Andrew Wedin: we certainly wish you all the best!!

Northwest Handmade Tile Festival

On Saturday, June 24, 2006 the"1st Annual Northwest Handmade Tile Festival" will be held 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Phinney Ridge Community Center, 6532 Phinney Ave. N. in Seattle. The one-day event will bring together the Northwest's amazing tile creators with other tile artists, buyers, designers, architects, home owners, and anyone else who is interested in or passionate about handmade tiles. The show will not be juried; spaces will be offered on a first come, first served basis. Deadline for signing up: June 1st.

The festival is presented by Artisan Tile Northwest, a newly formed group of local tile artists and artisans that wishes to support its members' creative and professional efforts by bringing visibility to handmade tile art through public education and exhibitions. For details email Carol Dean at info@deantile.com, call 360 331-1295 or write to Artisan Tile NW, P. O. Box 84872, Seattle, WA 98124.

Coverings: they got us “covered”!

Coverings is truly a tile extravaganza. With over 1200 exhibitors from more than 50 countries and with more than 33,000 people milling around over the four-day period, it is an incomparable experience. Add to this the educational programming, both the lecture series and the installation demonstrations each day; there is no way to do it all. You get to pick and choose your favorites. In that way it’s like a massive candy store for tile enthusiasts!

“Historic Tiles in Architecture,” the audio/visual display presented by Tile Heritage at Coverings was certainly apparent and seemingly well received by attendees. In addition to the big screen presentation in the main lobby of the Orange County Convention Center, the show appeared on two massive screens prior to the opening ceremony when the Spectrum and Prism Awards were presented. And during the week “Historic Tiles” appeared on multiple screens on the convention floor in between the installation demonstrations sponsored by the Tile Council and NTCA. The video included twenty-three historic installations in seven countries, over 160 images in all. Moving at a comfortable pace were the ruins of the Roman Empire in Italy, the majestic remains of medieval abbeys in England, the ornate royal palaces of Portugal and a series of grand mansions in the U.S. It is an honor for Tile Heritage to provide a historic perspective of this quality at the convention. Special thanks to Audio Visual Innovations, the group that provided the technical expertise for the show, and to Coverings for sponsoring it. We hope you’ll see more from us in Chicago.

Yes, Chicago where Coverings will be held next year! The dates are April 17-20, 2007 at McCormick Place.
Indeed, mark your calendar!

Update from CERF. Let’s not forget.

From the Executive Director of the Craft Emergency Relief Fund, Cornelia Carey:

“CERF's emergency relief work continues to be heavily focused on artists in the Gulf region. Requests for aid come in at a rate of about 4 per week. Since August 29, we have distributed over $200,000 in direct aid to 68 professional craft artists to help cover both basic needs and recovery costs of rebuilding and retooling homes and studios. We have also helped hundreds of artists with information and resource referrals, connecting them to a wider circle of support locally and nationally.

Recovery for most continues to move at a snail's pace. Essential services are still limited and uncertainty reigns from leadership to rebuilding plans. What is certain is that we need to remain committed to these artists for the long haul, perhaps for years. Though post-Katrina/Rita stories from the Gulf Coast no longer are front page news, we at CERF are determined to insure that the field stays current about and involved in the prolonged reconstruction process. We ask for your continued support so that we can let these artists see that there is a community around them who really cares about their future.”

Tile Heritage Foundation has pledged $2400 to CERF, and at this point we are about half way through our pledge. We strongly recommend this remarkable organization; check it out. Visit www.craftemergncy.org. Let’s not forget.

Twin Ports Tile Map Granted!

Congratulations to Karin Kraemer, who has just been awarded $3717 from the Doty Research Grant Committee to produce a full color map of historic and contemporary tile and mosaic sites in the “Twin Ports,” Duluth, Minnesota and Superior, Wisconsin. The map is being prepared for “Tiles of the Northern Plains: Building on Tradition,” the national tile conference being held in the Twin Ports and the Twin Cities September 13-17, 2006 presented by the Handmade Tile Association and Tile Heritage.

Karin is a maiolica tile maker and potter at her own Duluth Pottery; she also teaches ceramics at Lake Superior College. She is an active member of the Handmade Tile Association and has assumed the responsibility of planning the portion of the upcoming tile conference that will be held in the Twin Ports area on Wednesday and Thursday, September 14-15.

A Tile Heritage salute to Karin and to all those Tile Heritage members who make the grant possible by opting to donate to the Doty Research Grant when they renew their THF membership each year. 100% of these contributions go to the grant fund. When you are renewing next time, please give this fund some special consideration. It works for us all!

MN Tile Conference: Preview of Workshops

Let’s take a quick peek at the workshops that are being planned for Minneapolis.

For tile makers and mosaic artists: Join with Eric Rattan, nationally recognized general contractor, designer, stone mason and mosaicist in a 3-day intensive, hands-on workshop designed to acquaint the artist with successful trade-approved techniques for permanent tile and mosaic installations. If you are at the stage of installing your mosaics or handmade tile in or on buildings in frame floors, decks, shower enclosures, backsplashes, etc. this workshop may be for you. Sunday-Tuesday, September 10-12. See www.santafedesignstudio.com.

For tile makers: Norma Hanlon and Kirsten Halstead, known nationally for their SoMi tiles (formerly Fresh Fish), will be presenting a two part, hands-on tile making workshop. The opening 3-hour session will be held on Tuesday, Sept. 12th. A second session will be held later in the week. See www.somitileworks.com. Roger Mayland and the staff at North Prairie Tileworks will focus on developing base glazes in its 4-hour workshop mid-day on Thursday. Visit www.handmadetile.com.

For glass enthusiasts: Chris and Stacey Kelly will open their FK Art Glass Studio for two separate 4-hour workshops. The first will feature fused glass tile on Wednesday, the 13th, and the second on cast glass tile the following day.

And for mosacists: come away with your own mosaic mirror from the 4-hour, hands-on workshop with Mercedes Mattila at her Mercury Mosaics Studio on Wednesday, the 13th and enjoy gourmet Italian cuisine while you work! See www.mercurymosaics.com. Or visit the studio of mosaic artist Sharra Frank who will demonstrate her notable talents. Go to www.sharrafrank.com.

All Wednesday workshops will end in time for participants to drive the 2-1/2 hours to Duluth for the reception and dinner at Glensheen. (See April’s “E-News” for more details.)

MN Accommodations

To reserve a room in Minneapolis contact the Holiday Inn Metrodome at 800 448-DOME. Special rates have been arranged for the Tile Heritage Foundation (at the moment if you are a Priority Club member or a AAA member, your room rate may be lower than the rate we negotiated; be sure to check it out!). The hotel is located east of I-35W, just north of the I-94 freeway. If flying to Minneapolis, there is now a Light Rail from the airport to downtown. The Holiday Inn picks up at either the Cedar Riverside station or the Metrodome station. Call the hotel for a ride once you reach the station.

More details in our next report.

Tiles and Mosaics in Chicago

(The descriptions below are taken in part from “A Guide to Selected Mosaic Sites in Chicago” published by the Society of American Mosaic Artists (SAMA) for its recent conference in Chicago, “Beneath the Surface.” The photographs were taken by Joseph Taylor, who participated in the conference tours guided by architectural historian Rolf Achilles.)

Chicago Cultural Center located at 78 E. Washington was dedicated in 1897 as the first public library in Chicago. It features interior rooms modeled after the Doge’s Palace in Venice, the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, and the Acropolis in Athens. Mosaics of Favrile glass, mother of pearl, and gold are inlaid in marble. The wall and floor mosaics lead upstairs to a magnificent Tiffany dome designed by Jacob Holzer.

Not far away is Marshall Field & Company at Washington and State Streets where a Tiffany mosaic dome thought, at 6000 square feet, to be the largest of Tiffany’s domes. It took 50 craftsmen 18 months to install the 1,600,000 pieces. Again Jacob Holzer was the designer.

“Four Seasons” by Marc Chagall can be found at Bank One Plaza, on West Monroe between Dearborn and Clark Streets. This massive four-sided wall mosaic, created in 1974, measures 70 feet long by 14 feet wide by 10 feet tall. It offers views of people, flora, and fauna in stone and glass. Upon completion of the work the famous painter exclaimed, “Look how God made the world with little flies and mice.”

West of the downtown area is St. Paul’s Catholic Church at 2234 S. Hoyne, identified in Ripley’s “Believe It or Not” as being the church that was “built without a single nail.” Built in 1897 of brick, stone and terra cotta, the building was adorned with 2500 square feet of Venetian mosaics in 1930. As marvelous as the mosaics are, the brickwork is especially intriguing, trying to imagine the actual size of the numerous decorative units.

Until next time….

Click here to view past E-Newses!