All these tiles were salvaged or saved from the dumpster.
“This floor constructed of recycled tile. Room is 45ft x 35ft. Halfway thru with setting floor and is the last floor of my career and its mine.
If you’re looking for tile, go to the nearest tile supplier last minute of the last day of a tile sale. Ask for throw away tiles to do artwork. Ive been given pallets full of tile.”
Meet Dave Cook, the man behind all these amazing recycled creations.
Dave is 65 years old. He was a California licensed Building Contractor with a speciality license in Tile and Mosaic.
“I haven’t only done this recycled tile floor but I’ve been doing tile and mosaic for years. We bought an old schoolhouse in New Mexico and started renovating but my arthritis has taken it’s toll. I started the floor slowly 4 yrs ago but 2 yrs ago Hannah, my wife, hired a girl who came to the house looking for mowing jobs.”
Dave learned mosaic tile creation from Conrad Pickel.
“He’s in Guinness book of world records for the largest stain glass window in the world. I worked for him in Florida. He worked for Louis Comfort Tiffany.
I worked for Conrad in 1983. Didn’t know her then but my wife sat for Conrad modeling. I was living at another gallery at the time. We met and we soon got married on my first mosaic floor at that gallery.
Conrad didn’t use left over or throw away glass like I do. He flew to Venice to get hand cut venician glass for his mosaics. Poverty is the Mother of Ingenuity.”
Dave’s done a lot more than just recycled tile floors.
Dave has made over 135 mosaic mirrors.
“I still have 100. I always wanted to do a show, “100 Magical Mirrors ”
You may say, ” Why Magical “?
I’d say, “Remember the 7 year curse if you break a mirror?”
Broken Mirrors? Turn trash into treasure!
Dave used a lot of broken and snipped mirror in my mosaic framing.
“Memorials can be done with a shoebox full of memorabilia of the deceased. I like to put strands of hair behind the mirror. Maybe a mirror of the deceased. I don’t guarantee that the mirrors will be magic. I build them to aid someone who has the Touch.
White Porcelain was once part of a broken toilet tank. Tile was throw away cuts from a tile job. Dollar store for the picture frame, cut mirror, and fancy glass. $2:00 total. Backing was recycled too.”
Kayla Stanbrough, Apprentice Mosaic Artist.
“Kayla whom we’re teaching, wants to become a Mosaic Artist and a Tile Contractor. She does a lot of the work. I’m disabled now. She’s 22 years old and her little girl celebrated her 1 year birthday.
Many Thanks to Dave Cook for sharing his story with Re-Scape! Good Luck to Kayla Stanbrough, too!