From the late 19th century, architectural mosaic processing methods have been developed which allow the work to be prepared in the artist’s workshop, and later assembled in its destination site «section»-wise.
Before, works had always been performed on site – like in the ancient times.
Modern methods allow the mosaicist to work more relaxed, rationally and comfortably in his laboratory.
A mosaic artwork must be:
- planned in sections, almost like a jigsaw puzzle, with each section numbered and clearly identifiable
- appropriately worked in sections (portions), that can be transported and handled separately
- accurately designed around the “seams”, the junctions between sections, so that they do not remain visible after the final laying
- complete with a laying plan, mapping the numbered sections.
The size of each section depends on factors which include:
- ease of handling
- method of production (indirect, direct on intermediate support, etc)
- final destination (wall or pavement).
In some cases, the edges of the sections are not fully defined in the lab, but rather finished on site, placing sections next to one another and working the «seams» by direct method.
The difference between a professional mosaicist and a hobbyist is actually visible with the naked eye.
If the joints (seams) between sections of an architectural mosaic work are conspicuously evident, this is a clear sign of lack of professionalism.
An architectural mosaic of high value is not the work of pure chance, improvisation, or haste.