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Mosaic art display drops the hammer



Juanita Canzoneri's got a hammer, and she's about to break a shower door into thousands of tiny pieces.

"I cover the glass with a tarp and with one big break, it sounds like, 'Whoosh!'" she says. "You can hear it cracking for hours afterwards."

Canzoneri, a 45-year-old Colorado Springs resident, teaches at the Bemis School of Art and Full Spectrum Art Glass. Her artistic specialty typically features broken pieces of ceramic tiles, porcelain or glass carefully glued to a lumber base. Grout then fills in the empty spaces, granting the finished piece the semblance of an intricate puzzle.

Canzoneri takes the medium a step further by employing additional mixed-media techniques such as collage and paint underneath the glass.

"There are ways to make it all flat," she says, "but [those techniques] give it a little bit of character because the texture is so much of what this medium does."

With experience in fashion design and fabric art, Canzoneri shifted her primary artistic medium in 2001; that's when she designed her first mosaic on a coffee table and fell in love with the craft. She's since created positioned pieces (separate mosaics on a single base) as well as three-dimensional wall sculptures.

On a caption card displayed with each piece, she shares what type of glass she used and any additional elements she incorporated.

"Some of them, all I'm looking for is for people to get the joke and smile," she says. "Others are just communicating a beauty, like, 'I love this color isn't it cool?'"

The shower door she's about to smash, by the way, is amber-colored. Probably will look better in pieces anyway, don't you think?

New mosaic artwork by Juanita Canzoneri
Fountain Library Branch, 230 S. Main St., Fountain
Exhibit runs through February;
Monday-Thursday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., closed Sundays.
Free; call 382-5347 for more information.

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