I first discovered mosaics through the work of Antoni Gaudi while on a trip to Barcelona in 2000. I was in awe as my eyes and brain worked together to unite all of the small pieces contained in a mosaic, called tesserae, to become a unified design or pattern. I have always loved finding materials in unexpected places and giving discarded objects (broken china, chipped tiles, scraps of stained glass) a second life. I cut all of my materials by hand, using nippers, into the shapes that I want, highlighting different textures, reflectivity and dimensionality, and I lay them in patterns. Different patterns and shapes become the different “languages” in my work that describe the various subjects or parts. When there is a flow then I know I have succeeded. Most of my work is about my relationship with nature. I have experienced a lot of healing, both physical and spiritual, through plant medicine and spending time in nature.
Teaching mosaics is a way for me to constantly see this process through new eyes. Learning from the people who I teach is inspiring, and pushes me to try new things. There are as many ways to make a mosaic as there are mosaic artists. Sharing this skill and watching people create work that they are proud of is a thrill for me. I thrive on this.
I didn’t plan on becoming an artist, but I have learned that this is the heart of who I am. I was fortunate to grow up in Florence, Massachusetts, a community that embraces art and artists. I was raised by an artist who nurtured my creativity, from the time I was old enough to finger paint and scribble in coloring books.
I studied psychology and Spanish in college, and worked for over 10 years in the non-profit sector, as a program manager and arts administrator. I have been fortunate to travel to many incredible places and meet people who have encouraged and inspired my path. In my non-profit work, I had several opportunities to use art as a tool to engage people on a community level and for personal development. This led me to further pursue my own art and over the years, I narrowed my focus until I began to work exclusively in mosaics. In 2012 I left my full time job at Snow Farm, The New England Craft Program, though I am still involved there as a faculty member and board member.
I now run my business, Christine Kenneally Mosaics, out of my studio in Easthampton. I design, create and install custom work for clients ranging from individuals, to public schools, to colleges, to small businesses, to non-profit organizations. I teach the art and craft of mosaics to children and adults in private classes, community groups, at craft schools both locally and regionally, and in my own studio. I have exhibited my own personal mosaic work both locally and regionally, and I look for opportunities to collaborate with other artists whenever possible. In 2013 I created a line of mosaic garden stepping stones, which are for sale at The Cedar Chest in downtown Northampton. In 2014 I created a line of mosaic jewelry, which I sell directly, at craft shows and in my Etsy shop. Most recently, in 2015, I created a line of homemade herbal skincare products, which incorporates my deep love of nature and my goal of maintaining my health and my hands in a natural way.
I live in Easthampton with my husband Bill who is a Registered Dietitian and owner of his business Mediterranean Living, where I am involved as a writer, and help with special creative projects.