Champion / Nine Columns / Nine Artists

Seattle based photographer Peter de Lory is primarily concerned with exploring two different facets of the Pacific Northwest: the natural landscape and the urban infrastructure. He is interested in how humans relate to and alter the places where they live, whether it is the wilderness or urban landscape. For the SeaTac column, de Lory chose an iconographic Northwest image: the tallest Western Red Cedar tree in the world. The Noland Creek Redcedar is located on Noland Creek Road near Forks, WA in the Olympic Peninsula. The property is owned by the State School Trust Land and managed by the Department of Natural Resources. The tree has been saved by loggers in honor of its size and age: 178 feet tall, 19.4 feet in diameter and estimated to be 1,000 years old.

One of nine artists selected to create a two-dimensional design in various media including black and white photography, computer rendering, water media painting and collage, de Lory worked closely with Stephen Miotto of Miotto Mosaics to capture the spirit and quality of the original artwork and translate his photograph into a hand-cut glass and stone mosaic. The mosaic was fabricated in Spilimbergo, Italy. Spilimbergo is the home of one of the oldest schools for mosaic artisans in the world. For centuries, the glass masters and mosaicists of the region have made mosaic artwork. The glass tiles, or smalti, are made from special “secret recipe” glass that has been passed down through family businesses for generations. The glass is poured into a shape like a pancake and allowed to cool. The pancakes are cut by hand into small pieces used in the mosaics. Some of the matte areas in the composition are created from colored marble.

Text from 4 Culture Public Art Program