The Greeks’ pebble mosaics (Pella mosaics) consisted mostly of small stones that were terracotta and strips of lead to create contour lines and interior details (Kleiner 127). An example of a Pella mosaic is a mosaic done by the artist Gnosis (Fig. 2) at 300 BCE. Gnosis portrayed a stag hunt that consists of two men in motion, hunting/grabbing hold of the stag. The mosaic shows the natural colors from the pebbles against a black background. The artist also depicts the men’s muscular bodies, clothes, and the animals through shading. Moreover, th...
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... (Schlagman 124).
From the Ancient Greeks, Roman Empire, Byzantine, and Islamic Empires transform and modify mosaics toward their own culture. Therefore, each mosaic is unique from the materials, design, and functionality. The Greeks evolved the basic pebble mosaics to portraying a detailed image such as showing muscle on a human body. In addition, the Roman’s cultivated its own style of the mosaic such as adapting mythological themes and including decadent colors which made mosaics become a luxury item for the wealthy. Moreover, the Byzantine Empire adjusted their take on mosaics through depicting the Christian figures/symbols as weightless and having no constraints on space. Lastly, the Islamic Empire used bright, colorful pieces of mosaic to help decorate the interior and exterior of the buildings, which combined the focus on appearance as well as its function.
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