Unique and small artwork

The micromosaic

Its peculiarity is the use of very small dimensions tesserae, even less than a millimeter, which are the result of a laborious procedure. The enamel or glass paste is melted at high temperature then pulled in order to obtain a rod of desired thickness and shape.

Rods are then cut in small segments. Mosaic masters set one by one by hands the small tiles in order to obtain the pattern or the representations decided. The peculiarity of micromosaic jewels are the colors range, the three-dimensional effect and the uniqueness of the piece.

As a result of a handcrafting production process, the products are not fully reproducible and become unique and small artwork themselves.

The Heritage

Papal Rome

In Papal Rome of the second half of the ‘700, a precious and very particular art was developed: the one of the tiny mosaic: the tesserae offer to who admires them an extraordinary and perfect execution: a thumbnail of shards of coloured glass, perfectly combined in fragile elegance. The big is transformed into the small in a sort of fantastic introjection. As a parallelism, this image that previously covered an entire wall, is transformed in a subtle embroidery, inserted in a grid composition that melts and confuses, and forces the eyes to do a journey always different.

XVIII century

Until the XVIII century, the mosaics were produced with the technique of the cut enamel, based on its fragility. The enamel, shaped like a compact circular loaf, was placed on a small sharp anvil and then beaten with four hammer blows. In doing so, regular fractures were obtained that, from time to time, provided quadrangular pieces of enamel, progressively reduced to the desired shape.

A new technique

In the second half of XVIII century with the invention of the spinning of the glass paste, it was possible to create infinitely smaller tesserae. Through this extraordinary technical evolution, the production of the micromosaic was made possible. The enamel is melted to create long and thin sticks. The Micromosaic Masters cut sticks thanks to pliers and files.

The “malmischiati” technique

Later, a new technique was developed: the “malmischiati”. For the first time, more different colours were mixed to create infinite shadows within the same tesserae able to detect the most subtle shifts of light.

The palette of colours became so unlimited, up to ten thousand different shades, that the mosaic could imitate and replace perfectly the paintings. Soon, given the sophistication and virtuosity that these new techniques were able to give, the micromosaic was used in the decoration of everyday objects, special accessories and its highest expression, in real jewels.

Queens and nobles

Queens and noble women fell in love with the rare beauty of these unique jewels; so entire collections of jewellery in micromosaic could be found by the end of ‘700 in the whole of ancient Europe and in Russia, which we can still admire at Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg and in the Vatican Museums.

Present time

Sicis Atelier

It’s from this ancient tradition that the inspiration of the Micromosaic Masters stands out and finds expression in Sicis Atelier. So, after centuries, unexpected cultural and creative paths take place.  The goldsmiths meet the Micromosaic Masters And the jewel is transformed.
Sicis is a factory of artists, glassblowers, Mosaic Masters, who invent, re-interpret, create and believe in this magic.