Melanie Watts – Artist’s biography and work
On graduating in 1993 with a BA (Hons) degree in textiles, Melanie was offered a full time studio position creating bespoke hand drawn and painted wallpaper collections and furnishing fabrics. She was drawn to Mosaic after trips to Morocco where the vibrant alhambra tiles inspired her to start pursuing ways to enhance walls and floors and to Barcelona by Gaudi’s Mosaics and architectural masterpieces. After this, she started creating Mosaic from her Milton Keynes studio; commissions and books of her mosaic quickly followed.
For Melanie, mosaic is about re-assembling pieces: creating a thing of beauty out of broken fragments. She has attention to detail and colour, inspired also by many artists from the past and present as well as the decorative arts, in particular art nouveau. Her preference is to create work that resonates with her spirit, that excites her soul, and lifts her up.
In 2014, Melanie was chosen from thousands of applicants to represent Milton Keynes and the UK on an international mosaic project. Eighty International Artists worked collaboratively to mosaic the Town Hall in Santiago, Chile, producing a breath taking, highly colourful contemporary mosaic that attracts hundreds of tourists from around the world.
Melanie’s artwork for Gyosei – Autumn Splendour
For the Gyosei Art Trail, Melanie has created a mosaic in a range of stunning glass: a beautiful white barn owl is the focal point, briefly swooping into the foliage of trees in Great Linford to capture its prey. Each individually cut piece of glass brings the piece together, using soft and delicate colours to capture the delicate autumnal light, ranging from golds to yellows to stunning vibrant reds and oranges seen during on a stunning autumn day.
When talking to local residents, she had the idea of bringing attention to endangered species in the UK as well as depicting a well-loved species within the mosaic. Melanie has taken her own photographs of forestry along the Grand Union Canal at Great Linford, creating her own drawings with inspiration from these images for this piece of original art work.