Studio Smalti Collection
The Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis, in St. Louis, MO, contains one of the largest mosaic collections in the world. Mosaic installation began in 1912 and was finally completed in 1988. The mosaics collectively contain 42 million pieces of glass in over 7000 colors, covering 83,000 square feet. Wow!
Click here for an online tour of these incredible mosaics:
The majority of the mosaics were created by the Ravenna Mosaic Company of St. Louis, which was formed by August Wagner of Germany. When the mosaics were completed, the Ravenna Mosaic Company was left with an inventory of over 40,000 lbs. of Italian smalti in over 3000 shades. They clearly had the same problem we have in estimating coverage! The majority of the remaining inventory was created by Orsoni, and it also contains Italian smalti from other manufactures as well. The majority of the smalti is in the standard tesserae size- A cut.
In 2009, MosaicSmalti purchased this entire inventory-
-40,000 lb. of Italian Smalti-
and had it moved to our studios here on Cape Cod
We have named this leftover St. Louis inventory our STUDIO SMALTI to distinguish it from our regular Orsoni inventory. All of the Studio Smalti is all Italian Smalti in the standard A-cut and is in brand-new condition . The smalti arrived in over 1000 wooden drawers and 600 plastic buckets and it is currenlty stored in 3 storage units. Those who have visited the warehouses to see this smalti stash have coined them "Smalti Heaven" because that is truly what it is. Hundreds of shades of blues, never-before-seen shades of orange or red or pink, flesh tones to match every human on the planet. These one-of-a-kind colors, in limited amounts, are a joy to behold . They also open up a whole new world to those of us accustomed to limiting our palette to a mere 100-200 shades. (poor us!)
You will be able to find the Studio Smalti offerings our 'Specials' section and also in our "Smalti Mixes" All of the Studio Smalti is in the standard A-cut and is in brand-new condition (unless otherwise noted, as there are a number of 'antique' smalti shades that we will be offering)
It's important to remember that the Studio Smalti is available only in limited amount and when it is gone, it is gone forever. Please keep this in mind when ordering to avoid disappointment!
We are offering the Studio Smalti to our clients in the following ways:
1. Ongoing Monthly Specials.
We will offer both individual colors and mixes from the Studio Smalti every month. The Studio Smalti Mixes will combine a number of related tones and shades of smalti to give the artist a full and interesting compatible palette. The number of shades in each of our Studio Mixes will increase as we continue to add the one-of-a-kind colors that we find in the Studio inventory. (The specific colors contained in the Studio Mixes may not be available individually as there is a limited quantity) It's this slight variation in color and tone that when used together, add interest and depth to your mosaics.
2. On-site visits to Smalti Heaven Warehouses
The Studio Smalti is also available to clients who would like to pick out their smalti in person. This is especially useful to those working on large scale mosaics with a wide variety of colors, but everyone is invited for a 'tour'. It's so cool to see all this smlati in one place (outside of Venice!). Artists can make an appointment for a visit to the 'Smalti Heaven' warehouses to personally choose the colors for their projects. In many instances, the cost of the trip to Cape Cod could be paid for with the savings of using the less expensive-- but more unique- Studio Smalti. (with over 3000 colors, it is basically impossible to create Sample Cards!) Call us for details at 508-432-5369
3. Custom Matching Service
We are happy to share this material with our clients through our custom matching service, perfect for those with specific color needs. To do that, you would need to mail us a color swatch for us to match (paint sample, tessera, etc.) along with the quantity requested. We'll search for our best match from the Studio Collection. Email us for more details.
We hope you will enjoy the Studio Smalti as much as we are having sharing it!
A huge THANK YOU to some Beautiful and Talented Friends of MosaicSmalti,
Rachel Sager and Deb Aldo,
for their tireless work in organizing
this beautiful smalti collection
(seen here in a well-earned lunch break!)
More photos soon of the newly improved Smalti Heaven Warehouses!