Sunday, October 8, 2017

One Man's Trash --- Day 6/230

Walk: Stairs (x2), Round and About the Pad
Distance:  4 Blocks, 10 exercise/asana sessions, General puttering

Today Ciwt was thinking of one of her friends who is quite talented at mosaic work and will soon travel to a workshop in Mexico.  Mosaics are one of the most famous types of Roman art, but the first people to make mosaics were from Mesopotamia (now Iraq) thousands of years before the Greeks who then took up the art form.  As with all their art, from sculpture to architecture, the Romans adopted mosaics from the Greeks.

The Romans are credited with perfecting the mosaic form (and in fact they did raise it to a high level), but most of the recorded names of Roman stone workers are actually Greek, suggesting the highest skills were retained by the Greeks.  Probably the most skilled artists created the cartoon for the mosaic and the actual cutting and laying of the tesserai (small, cut stones) into plaster was done by slaves.

Because mosaics are intricate and time consuming (hence expensive) they were seen in the villas and town homes of the wealthiest citizens of the Roman Empire from Africa to Britain  - not in ordinary homes.  Often their scenes were copies of paintings, a far more prestigious art form.  That the most popular subject matter was mythlogical figures, hunting scenes and other pursuits of the wealthy comes as no surprise to Ciwt.  But, because she like her neighbors out here, works to understand and follow our complicated 'rules' for trash disposal, she was rather amazed to learn that one of the most sought after and copied scenes was bones and scraps of food left on the floor - presumably after a sumptous orgy.

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