Susan Crocenzi, Contemporary Mosaic Art

Detail of Nevada
This one, a mandala, comes straight from the Nevada desert where I spent a few nights sleeping in my Scion xB. The feeling of being a microscopic speck in a vast place, of being circled by invisible rings of safety. Just a tiny pulsing dot laying out there, warm summer-scented air skipping across my skin. My arms and legs stretched hundreds of miles across the basin to the adjacent range. I inhaled stars as the glittering night descended (or maybe I ascended?) and swept me into its epic little orbit.

Made of stained and tempered glass, and colored mirror.
Number 3 of a slowly growing collection called Rolling Around, based on Susan's recent 6,000 mile solo road trip through the Southwest, US. Please click to see full pic.

"Susan makes mosaics on steroids." -Carol Herschleb, Director, NCOS Tour

Mosaic art offers us the sweet possibility that our own crazy, disjointed life-bits can yield peace, beauty, and meaning.

You know those moments when all kinds of weird and wonderful things happen at the same time? As if The Goddesses are playing their favorite cosmic carnival-game, Ring Toss, and from their faraway homes only reachable by rocket ship or smartphone, each lands her golden hula-hoop around their favorite target: YOU! Shing!shing!shing! You reach for something solid. Shingshingshing! Your eyes grow big. Shinng!shinng!shinng! You know that sound! You elbow the guy next to you, “That’s the sound of serendipity, you know!”

“I don’t hear anything,” he says.

Making it all the more potent, of course, is that each of us has our own cadre of odds and chronology-defying Spirits tossing their golden loops of chance and vision in our general direction. What is deliciously unsettling and profound to me could very well be static to you.

I can tell you how much time I spend making art, but I’d rather talk about the times when I’m in a pure state of earnestness, trying my very best, showing my tools respect, my hands, the top of my head open, swallowing stars. That’s when time is less tick-tock tick-tock, and more magic carpet ride.

I can tell you how much I’ve been inspired by Niki de st Phalle and Freidensrich Hundertwasser. But, I’d rather that conversation be silent while we walk, hand-in-hand, round and round their out-of-the-box creations.

I can tell you how much I love materials. Seriously, don’t get me started. Glass, ceramic, mirror, crockery, stone, polymer clay, beads, good vibes, ball-chain. But especially glass... The regular stuff. Humble and clear and colorless. I’m mesmerized by the Alice-in-wonderland invitation it offers, to look through something at something else, to imagine, magnify, shift perspective.

But, I’d rather tell you that I want my art to add to your stories, whatever they are. Or at the very least, embellish them a bit. Maybe they’ll spark a random conversation with a stranger, an astronaut who totally gets, and expands, your sense of blue. Maybe a piece of mine will knock the breath out of you, in a good way, and resurface in a dream that night, where a fierce dragon gazes deep into your pink core and breathes something new and hot straight into your lungs. Maybe for your birthday, your Fairy Godmothers will hand you a giant present. You tear into it. What can it be? You push your happy face inside. Wow! A new smartphone! And, there’s more! A Hula-hoop 2000, the newest model! Mm hm … And …? Anything else?

A piece of my work? No way! Awesome!

My wish for that artwork, for you as its new bestie, is that it folds in amongst your life-stuff: that phone, the dragon, the dream. All of that lands in a boat on a lake, and look! Carl Jung just showed up! You all float there, suspended on that slim mercurial line between water and air, rocking the boat with hula-hoop shenanigans. --Susan