“Get close, then get closer,” are the words that Anne Oshman uses to describe her inspiration and approach to the creation of the large scale mosaics she has been creating for the last few years. She is fully absorbed in the details.
Oshman began her artistic career many years ago creating functional art pieces for sale through furniture retailers, boutiques, and galleries. A life-long gardener she has always been creative. Her talent for decoration and her love of gardening, may well have come together leading to her discovery of the fine art of mosaic. The qualities that makes her uniquely suited for the art of mosaic-making are her delight in capturing details that would otherwise go unnoticed, a gardener’s eye for seeing the whole in the component parts, as well as a keen understanding of her audience based on her sales as a decorative artist. But it was in the fortuitous discovery of a NY Studio run by European trained mosaicists, that led Oshman to discover her passion, the art of mosaic.
Her compositions consist primarily of cropped figures with a focus on the positions of the figures and their surroundings. These mosaics are portraits of a sort and though the figures are anonymous, they express a great deal about the relationships of the people within the mosaic as well as reveal the artist’s unique point of view. Oshman painstakingly chooses these images from the vast array of images that barrage people in contemporary life. Some come from her own photographs, others are assimilated from foreign sources such as newspaper or magazine advertisements.
Although mosaic is often used as a formal decorative attribute of interior and exterior architecture, it also undoubtedly documents the culture that produced it. These mosaics are not merely accessories; each is a piece of art. Oshman’s mosaics, which now include sculpture and groundscape, explore 21st century preoccupations Her use of an ancient medium does not constrain her view of contemporary life.
Oshman is a member of SAMA (Society of American Mosaic Artists), NAWA (National Association of Women Artists), and the Guild. She has studied mosaic arts at the Unicorn Art Studio in New York City as well as having a MA from Hunter College and a BS in Elementary Education from NYU.
• 5 female makers to watch in NJ, Asbury Park Press Site, March 2017
• Splendor in the Glass: Tile Mosaics by Anne Oshman, Design and Home Site, July 2015
• Artful State, Payne, Lauren, New Jersey Monthly, July 2014
• Getting Under Your “Skin” at Lana Santorelli Gallery, Dans Hamptons, issue 15, 2007
• Pieces in Motion, (Cover Story), Laser, Michael, Montclair Magazine, Spring 2006
• Bishoff, Dan, “Art in Crafts” in the Jersey City Museum, Star Ledger, October 7, 2005
The art of mosaic is created by combining small pieces of “tesserae” to form a larger image. I use this ancient medium to capture 21st century reflections of ourselves. Using 3/8” micro mosaic tile, marble and/or glass, these portraits express the relationship between people and their surroundings. Details that would otherwise go unnoticed are highlighted, yet the feeling of anonymity creates a sense of voyeurism for the viewer. My work has often been derived from photographs, capturing moments and bits and pieces of individual narratives.
The newest evolution of my work is shifting toward the sculptural, both real and organic, an interesting extraction from materials that are solid and impervious. They, too, have quirky elements which lend context and personality, conveying a story. Mosaic, as I see it, speaks a language of contemporary inspiration infused with tradition.