Describe your profession, with details on products, services, expertise and know how.
My name is Andreas Theodoridis and I am a mosaic artist with 13 years of experience. At the moment I am 75 years old and I create mosaic art pieces and tessellation works.
I normally produce replicas and copies of images so creativity relies on the working process to create a finished image that will look a lot like the original. Usually I choose what I would like to produce and then I print the image which I use as a guiding source to place tiles with the glue on my surface of choice. A finished work can be mosaics on a plate, a painting like surface, natural materials like stones, a wall or furniture etc.
What materials do you use? Where and how you purchase them?
I use coloured mosaic tiles which I cut on any shape I need. The tiles are eco-friendly. The accessibility to raw materials, which in my case is mosaics, is becoming more and more difficult as time goes by. Due to the specialization of the work, there are not enough resellers in Limassol, the shop with high quality mosaic tiles has been closed for 4 years. The result is that there is only one tile supplier in Limassol with a limited stock.
At what age and under what circumstances did you start this job?
I first encountered mosaic art at the village of Anogyra almost 14 years ago after retiring from my full-time work at the electricity production plant. I was always a man of work and after retiring I wanted to continue to be active so I attended two lessons on mosaic art techniques. You can say I was talented on this kind of art because these two lessons was all I needed to start my own production.
Describe the techniques, the tools and the materials you use in your work.
Main tools include the tile cutter, everyday cutlery, and the glue to stick the tiles on the surface of choice. In the case of the tile cutter, it’s not an expensive tool but it takes time and practice to get used to using it.
And what about innovation, what are the changes since you started? Do you use new materials, tools, or processes in manufacturing and marketing? What is the impact of innovation on your performance? How could your profession be even more innovative?
Innovation and tradition mostly refer to the design and finished art works. Traditional works have a matte feeling and the design is usually copies of religious icons and ancient works of art and patterns. Innovative designs have a glossier feeling and the designs are more abstract and modern. Also, the surface where someone uses the tiles corresponds to innovation or tradition and for example big flat stones refer to innovation. Personally, I produce both innovative and traditional pieces.
What is your message to younger generations who might choose your profession?
Mosaic artists are very few in Cyprus and as a profession is nonexistent. So my message is that someone who has the patience and talent can create even better and better works of arts and whole projects that can be promoted. For sure young artists can go for it especially having in mind that they are preserving a craft that is dated thousands of years and they promote their cultural heritage.