03 February 2010
Posted by Paul Anater at 6:18 AM
Julie Richey is an award-winning master mosaicist and great friend of this blog. She won the prestigious Orsoni Prize in Venice last year for her dimensional mosaic, Night Shirt.
Night Shirt now hangs in Venice's Orsoni Gallery alongside the other greats from the long history of mosaic as an art form. Julie's based in Dallas and shows her work all over the world. She can still put in a mean floor too.
Well Julie Richey put together something she's calling the Mosaic Masterpieces Tour, an eight-day excursion to explore the art, culture, food and wine of Italy this June. Julie's leading the group and she'll be accompanied by another titan in the world of fine art mosaics, Nancie Mills-Pipgras, the editor of Mosaic Art Now. The group is limited to 15 to make sure that this tour is un-tour-like as possible. This trip's been coordinated through ACIS, the American Council of International Studies. ACIS is the world leader in educational travel. ACIS' superb planning ensures that this trip will be about art and laughter, not missed connections and lackluster meals.
With ACIS taking care of the specifics, Julie and Nancie can be the personable, knowledgeable and good humored people they are. These women are even bigger Italophiles than I am, and that's quite an accomplishment. Travelers on the Mosaic Masterpieces Tour can expect to see masterworks up close and from behind the velvet ropes. They can also expect to experience Italy as Italy and at a pace where it can be savored.
The tour will start on June 9th in Venice. Then it's on to Ravenna, Siena and finally Rome. Ahh, Rome. Julie assures me that Rome's famous Carciofi alla Giudea will be in season when she and her group arrive. Carciofi alla Giudea are an early summer treat, fried artichokes. Their description loses something when it's translated to English, but to eat one is to taste the very essence of the sun-drenched fields that surround the Eternal City.
A tour such as this is an ideal opportunity for design professionals, mosaicists and mosaic aficionados to get a real feel for the history of this ancient art form while at the same time, seeing up close its expression today. From the Orsoni foundry and gallery in Venice to the Byzantine wonders of Ravenna, from the Medieval treasures of Siena to the High Renaissance glories of Rome, it's all here.
If you's like to read about the specifics of this trip, including prices and registration deadlines, you can learn more on Julie's Website, Julie Richey Mosaics. If you're interested in booking, you can e-mail Julie through her website directly.
All photos courtesy of Julie Richey