Matteo Randi was in Verdiano's Contemporary Mosaic workshop with us. He had never studied with Verdiano, beginning his studies in Ravenna years after Verdiano left for Paris - I think.
Matteo's work is breathtaking, full of life and vision, both subtle and dramatic and totally captivating. And he is terribly nice and very passionate about his work and mosaic art. He teaches at the Chicago Mosaic School and sometime I plan to take one of his classes.
He teaches ancient Roman mosaic techniques and other workshops. I asked him if he could recommend a bibliography for me so that I could learn more about the historical context for mosaic (as preparation, in part, for my trip to Italy in 2012).
He generously took me to his work room at the school and we went through his books to come up with a list for me.
These first three were his suggested first purchases. I've ordered #2 and #3.
Mosaic: Materials, Techniques, and History
Isotta Fiorentini Roncuzzi & Elisabetta Fiorentini
Glossario Tecnico-Storico del Mosaico / Technical-Historical Glossary of Mosaic Art
Mosaics of the Greek and Roman World
Katherine M. D. Dunbabin
Some of the following are in Italian, some in both Italian and English, and some in English...
Il mosaico per immagini
Marco De Luca ; testo di Bruno Bandini ; premessa di Henry Lavagne ; introduzione di Marcello Landi.
Italian Mosaics: 300-1300
Mosaics of Roman Africa: Floor Mosaics from Tunisia
Michele Blanchard-Lemee (Author), Mongi Ennaifer (Author), Hedi Slim (Author), Latifa Slim (Author), Gilles Mermet (Photographer), Kenneth D. Whitehead (Translator)
Greek Art - Byzantine Mosaics
Mosaici d'Artisti Contemporanei
G.Bovini, G.C.Argan, P.Portoghesi,P.Fischer, 1986
In Italian, but vaulable because it shows the cartoons and the finished mosaics.
When I mentioned an interest in how fabric and clothing is represented in mosaics, Matteo went back into his library and pulled out a book on the Basilica of San Vitale in Ravenna - a Mirabilia Italiae Guide book...
La Basilica di San Vitale a Ravenna
Gianfranco Malafarina, editor,
published by Franco Cosimo Panini
I haven't found a place to buy this one, so I might have to find another book that has good photos of the mosaic in the Basilica di San Vitale a Ravenna.