A bit of stuff about me and about the spirit behind Glittering Shards…
2. I’m a UK-born Italian and spent part of my childhood in Italy (in a seaside town called Marina di Ginosa). Think white sandy beaches and acres of vineyards…perhaps there’s an Italian gene for loving mosaics?
3. I’m a bit of an urban hippy (tree hugging, hand crafting, veg growing, carbon-reducing lover of all things slow and natural).
4. Until becoming a professional mosaic artists, I was a social worker / trainer for 20 years. Loved it, particularly the people. But art was calling me. I answered and have not looked back. I am loving the serendipity of facilitating community mosaics with groups I used to work with.
5. Favourite colours – turquoise and red. Fave shapes – swirls and curls. Fave seasons – spring and autumn. Fave food – artichokes, asparagus, rice, fish, watermelon. OK, ok…I know that was more than one thing….
6. Yup, my hair is naturally curly (I used to try and straighten it when I was a teenager – how silly!)
7. Van Morrison is my all time favourite musical artist – Irish mystic and musical genius. Love.
8. I have a first class Honours degree from the London School of Economics which I am rather proud of.
9. I was a founder member of a not-for-profit organisation, working with survivors of violence & abuse. I still help run support groups and consider it a total privilege to listen as people bravely share their brokeness.
10. Lastly and most wonderfully, I am wife to a gorgeous, loving husband and mother to two scrumptious children who keep me on my toes and remind me daily that playing, learning and ‘being’ is where its really at.
Why ‘Glittering Shards’?
“Everything is broken“ (Bob Dylan)
“There is a crack, a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in” (Leonard Cohen)
Mosaics is a reflection of life and an embodiment of hope. It doesn’t take much observation or introspection to realise that so much in us and around us is broken. Yet that brokeness, with patient care and attention, can be transformed into something life-giving and beautiful.
I began Glittering Shards in 2004. Around that time, I was reading a book by spiritual writer, Henri Nouwen. In this he recounts a scene from a Bernstein play where a beautiful glass chalice falls and is smashed into hundreds of tiny pieces. The once powerful priest who had held the chalice looks down at the shattered glass and says “I never knew something broken could be so beautiful”.
That phrase somehow summarized my own life journey and dovetailed intuitively into my love of mosaics. It was then that the words “Glittering Shards” came into my head, capturing the essence, not just of the mosaic medium but also of the heart and soul of who I am as a mosaic artist and person. It is that love of mosaics (making and teaching), art-full living (a deep belief in creative expression as a birthright of all people) and yearning for a soul-full life (connected to our deep-selves, to others and the wider world) that is Glittering Shards, underpinned by a conviction that all that is broken can be transformed.