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Art: Brushstrokes in stone

(January 2011) Is it mosaic or is it a painting – in stone? Lubosz Karwat has parted ways with the classic Tesserae technique of laying down pictures in tiny stone pieces and instead uses all types, shapes and sizes of stone. Blonds have more fun with the help of marble locks, the Holy Spirit glows accompanied by a dove with a halo in contrasting lines of sun-ray-coloured stone slivers.

Without a doubt Karwat’s work is mosaic as it is crafted from individual pieces of stone. But it crosses the line to painting as the artist uses the stone like a brushstroke.

The roots of his work may lie in Karwat’s childhood: his father was an art teacher. But he was not predestined to work in mosaic. First he attended a school for art restoration in South Poland’s Wrocław. Only after his apprenticeship did he learn the art of mosaics.

He is commissioned by a wide variety of clients: from company logos to murals or floor mosaics to back-lit compositions without a particular motif.

Special mention is due for interpretations of classical art works such as „Young Lady With Green Gloves“ by Tamara de Lempicka. He emphasises that these works are not copies of the original as they enjoy an unmistakable artistic value in their own right.

As adamant as he is about his works of art, he is always a little unsatisfied often altering pieces in an incessant attempt to attain perfection. As he says: „I constantly seek to improve them“.

Prime motifs are abstract. He is most satisfied with the pop-art blond dubbed Madame Lovelock. He does not seek to alter this work but it is not for sale.

Lubosz Karwat (Polish)

Lubosz Karwat is founder and chairman of the Polish Trade Organisation of Mosaic Craftsmen (SPartM, Polish). The Organisation currently counts 9 members among them Eva Saczka and Wiesław Ratajczak a sample of whose work we show below.