Iowa University River of Life Mosaic




The River Of Life Mosaic

Entrance atrium floor mosaic of a meandering river running across geometric field like patterns. The river represents both the local Iowa River meandering across the rural landscape and The River Of Life. In this work artist Gary Drostle aimed to bring together the history and topography of the local area with the aspirations of wellbeing and life lived in balance.

Pattern in mosaic - CRWC, Iowa City

Pulling together multiple themes into a united view of life

The River begins at a spiralling source representing birth and continues to the end. The meandering lines of mosaic tesserae running along the River are meant to symbolise individual lives. The background fields were inspired by the textile patterns of local Iowa First Nation peoples and local Amish quilt patterns together with local basket weaving traditions. The central section of the fields are golden, symbolising a balanced life while on the edges the field colours turn grey, representing life out of balance. So the river of peoples lives flows from birth sometimes in balance and sometimes out of balance. Some of these life lines can be seen breaking off from the river symbolising lives that run off or are cut short whilst some others burst out from the perimeter of the mosaic, echoing how the Iowa River itself burst it’s banks, like lives that are critically out of balance

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