Extroverted Tesserae Hound Seeks Like Minded Individuals
by Margo Anton, Edmonton, Canada www.minervamosaics.com
I came to mosaics just over a decade ago, and as an avid web surfer, I quickly happened upon Mosaic Artists Org, a Yahoo group forum devoted to all things mosaic. In Canada, where I’m from, mosaic is not a particularly well-known medium. I was working mainly in isolation, self-taught, ordering supplies unseen from the Internet. Opportunities for classes were not available at the levels I wanted.
Within the forum, I learned about the Society of American Mosaic Artists and the conferences they held. I desperately yearned to go the 2004 conference in San Francisco, but was unable. As forum members began posting their pictures from the event, I vowed I would make it happen the following year.
My first conference in 2005 was the start of a whole new world for me. Here were all these people, in the flesh, who loved to do the same thing I loved, others who understood the joy of the painstakingly slow build up of the tesserae. Heck, I was just happy to be around people who knew the word “tesserae”!
I’m looking forward to attending my 8th conference and much has happened in the years between my first and today. I am now a working mosaic professional, teaching workshops around the world as well as producing mosaic wall panels, mosaic jewelry, and assorted commissions. I teach at the SAMA conferences, and am usually a vendor at the Vendor Marketplace as well. SAMA opens many doors of opportunity for the passionate and interested. With all my involvement in the conferences these days, they pass by in a crazy blur, fueled by adrenaline and red wine.
Even if these “professional” opportunities were removed, I’d still come back again and again. The people I have come to know, the conversations we’ve had, not only about mosaics but about life, keep me coming back. My favorite people–and some of my best friends—are always there. At the conference, I get to really be me, not a wife, sister, daughter, but just me, Margo Anton. SAMA conferences act as a gas station of sorts for me, refueling my creative spirit for another year. The conference reminds me of why I do what I do, especially since sometimes it seems it would be a great deal easier working a 9 to 5 job than trying to make a living in an obscure art form.
So where will I be this year in mid April? Well, I’ll be in Tacoma at the American Mosaic Summit, of course. I’ll be the blonde at the hotel lounge with a glass of red wine in hand. Come say hi, because meeting other like-minded tesserae hounds is my favorite thing.
Margo lives in Edmonton, Canada, and works and teaches in her studio behind her house. When she isn’t traveling, she likes to chill with her husband and her dog. Her work can be seen at www.minervamosaics.com