Mosaic is a tactile and robust medium, although there are always certain practical constraints when designing or working on a commission. Laura relishes the challenges and has a good eye for composition and harmony. Colour and texture are probably the main preoccupations of this artist and both are important in mosaic work. The juxtaposition of textures adds to the visual interest. Often ceramics, glass, metal, fabric, paper or found objects are incorporated into Laura’s work, as well as traditional square tesserae.
The cutting and laying down of tiles piece by piece in a mosaic can be a slow process. Laura says that it gives her time to think and make connections and the work can evolve with her mental flow. She is hopeful that the end result will resonate with the viewer.
Laura Symes was born and brought up on the Hebridean island of Lewis and has enjoyed drawing for as long as she can remember. While growing up she loved studying art, different cultures and the natural world. After graduating in history in Ireland she lived for a couple of years in South Africa where she became interested in crafts such as traditional weaving and jewellery making.
On returning to the UK, Laura was employed in education and, through her work with children, was introduced to the ancient craft of mosaics. This medium offered opportunities for people of all ages and abilities to co-operate, sharing and exchanging their skills, whilst working towards a greater goal. Laura enjoyed the collaborative element of group projects, but became increasingly aware of the possibilities of mosaic for her own creativity and expression.
Laura attended workshops and training with established mosaic professionals. Through volunteering at Southbank Mosaics, Art4Space and other organisations she developed her skills and became involved in several public realm projects such as William Blake’s Lambeth, the Queenhithe Timeline Heritage Mosaic and the portraits of local women achievers which are displayed on the outside walls of Morley College. In recent years Laura has contributed pieces to several group shows and in spring 2019 she represented herself as one of a group of mosaicists at the Hard Surfaces Exhibition in London’s ExCel Centre. Her studio is at Deptford X, Brookmill road, Deptford.
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