Illustrations by Maria Mariano

Mosaics: history and technique in St.Mark’s Basilica

 

Mosaics are a wonder to look at, but the hidden wonder is learning how they are made in the first place. The best place in the world to discover all about mosaics is the Basilica of St.Mark. The technique of mosaicists goes back to ancient Greece in the V century b.C., making its way steadily through the south of Italy and finally into Venice, where the art mosaics reached its most impressive results right here in the Basilica. When you’re inside, you’ll presumably have your head tilted upwards, but rest your neck and look down for a bit… even the floors are made of mosaics, an interminable carpet of precious marbles of more colours and shapes than you can count.
We’ll then climb rather steep stairs, but the effort is more than worth it to see the Museum, where other ancient mosaics are preserved, but especially to admire the church’s ceiling mosaics from up close. And this is also where you’ll learn about the Venetian art of mosaic creation, and of the biblical scenes you’ll be admiring.
If you’re really into it, why not follow a practical lab on how to make mosaics?

Translations: itItaliano