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Artist: Martin Cheek


MARTIN CHEEK ...... graduated in graphic design from Exeter College of Art & Design in 1981...... Having made award winning films as a student, he subsequently worked on several puppet animation projects including ‘The Wind in the Willows’ ‘Paddington Bear’ ‘Noddy in Toyland’ and ‘Portland Bill’.......... He then set up his own production company Cheeky Films Ltd.......... For many years Martin was a part time lecturer at the Royal College of Art. He is a former art critic for the Daily Express and now works full time as a professional mosaic artist.......... Martin is regularly commissioned by both private and corporate clients as well as by museums........ His work also appears in leading National magazines and newspapers as well as on television. His weekend courses in the UK and abroad continue to be popular with students from all over the world keen to learn the art of making mosaic....... Over 1200 people have now attended Martin’s courses.......

COMMISSION AN ORIGINAL........... mosaic of your pet by Martin Cheek.................Over the years I have mosaiced many pet portraits........... If anyone would like a portrait of their pet I would be happy to oblige............ This can be particularly poignant when the pet is no longer with us .................then it becomes a lasting memorial to your canine or feline or ? friend........... These portraits can be funny or serious, realistic or stylistic ...and sometimes BOTH of the same pet!.................SET IN STONE.............Mosaic is the perfect medium for a memorial mosaic and if required I can cast the mosaic in cement so that it can be set in the ground and become a permanent monument to your pet................... Or it could simply be a lovely mosaic portrait for you to hang on your wall........ In order to capture the character of your pet it will help me if you can tell me things about him or her that make up his / her personality and make him / her unique...........

..................... PRICES RANGE From £ 280 - £ 3500 ........


Hi! – My name is Martin Cheek and I live in England – in a seaside town called Broadstairs on the Kent coast........ Charles Dickens lived here – next door in fact and our house is Georgian and was built in 1720........
My story is that I went on a game show over here called ‘the Weakest Link’ and won! I spent the prize money on a glass fusing kiln and Bulls eye Dichromatic glass...... Although I’ve been fusing glass for about twenty years in my ceramic kiln, this special new kiln gives me more control, allowing me to be more specific in my working methods......
Basically I have two ways of working – one is to design a mosaic and specifically cut and make the pieces, like in a piece of marquetry or stained glass and gradually built up the picture over a period of weeks........ Usually the pieces get smaller and smaller as I fill in the remaining areas...... I then mosaic the background in the normal way. The other method is what I call my ‘free style’........ This is where I make sets of fusions and then play around to come up with a mosaic ..... so say in the case of the fusion birds – I make sets of wings, heads, crests and tails....... So although I know that the elements in these sets belong together, the mosaic has not been designed at this stage...... I then assemble and by playing around with the pieces, the mosaic comes to life.
The dichromatic glass, as its name suggests has two colours within it and the colour changes depending on the angle at which you look at it....... This can be green and blue or gold and purple – whatever. Of course this holographic effect doesn’t show up on a single photograph!
........Of the pieces submitted, the Leopard’s and cat’s belong to the first method and the Turkey is a free style mosaic........
I work on about ten mosaics at a time, choosing which piece to work on depending on my mood........ I find realism the hardest thing to achieve so I have to be feeling brave to tackle those ones!
......I love making the mosaics. They ARE meant to be amusing. so I hope that you enjoy looking at them as much as I enjoy making them!
Martin says: “Mosaic is becoming more and more popular both as an art form and as a decorative medium........ I regard my mosaic work as a logical progression from animation, both of which involve building a coherent whole, displaying character and movement, from thousands of tiny elements....... I am particularly inspired by the natural world and relish the challenge of capturing its organic grace in such a seemingly uncompromising medium.”

..... " The Romance is in the Originals "


1978 – 1981 Exeter College of Art and Design: B.A. Hons. in Graphic Design.
1985 – Present: Self employed mosaic / ceramic artist.
1995 – 1996 Art Critic for The Daily Express.
1994 – 1996 Royal College of Art. Part-time lecturer in Animation MA & Life Drawing.
1985 – 1993 Co-founder and Creative Director of Cheeky Films Ltd.
1982 – 1985 Filmfair Communications: Director / Animator / Puppet & Model Maker.
1981 – 1982 Cosgrove Hall Productions: Set and Prop design and construction.
One-man Exhibitions of Mosaic Sculpture, Mosaics & Ceramics
June – July 2004 Old Town Gallery of Contemporary Art, Margate, Kent.
Aug. 2002 Fish Slab Gallery, Whitstable, Kent.
March 2001 – 2005 Gallery of Mosaic Art & Design, Business Design Centre, London.
March 2001 Bartley Drey Gallery, Old Church Street, Chelsea, London.
Dec. 2000 – May 2001 Wetlands Wildfowl Trust Centre, Barnes, London.
Aug. 2000 Chelsea Arts Club Garden, Chelsea, London.
June 2000 Whitstable Festival, Kent.
April 1998 - April 1999 Touring exhibition: Mobile Arts Unit, Kent.
March 1999 - Jan 2000 Cheeky Birds Touring Exhibition: Swale / Canterbury / Medway / Herne Bay / Sittingbourne / Sheerness / Faversham / Meopham /Dartford / Stroud.
May 2000 Jersey Museum & Art Gallery.
April 1998 Chelsea Arts Club, Chelsea, London.
May 1997 Ramsgate Library Gallery, Kent.
Sept. – Oct. 1995 Fitch’s Ark Gallery, Little Venice, London.
Nov. 1994 - Jan. 1995 The Building Centre Gallery, Store Street, London.
Sept – Oct. 1994 The Pump House Gallery, Battersea Park, London.
April – Sept. 1993 Mr Punch & His Relatives From Around the World. The Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith, London.
Group Exhibitions
Aug – Oct. 2005 The Sea. Joint show with painter Bob Fludgate, Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury.
Dec. 2002 – Jan 2003 By Hand Craft Exhibition. Maidstone Town Hall.
May – June 2002 Ceramica – International Festival of Clay, Falmouth Art Gallery,
Dec. 2001 – Jan. 2002 Bartley Dray Christmas Exhibition, Old Church Street, Chelsea.
Dec. 2000 – Jan. 2001 Bartley Dray Christmas Exhibition, Old Church Street, Chelsea.
Dec. 2000 – Jan. 2001 A Rite of Passage, Ramsgate Library Gallery,
Dec. 1999 Chelsea Arts Club Christmas Show, Chelsea, London.
June - July 1999 Fresh Air 99, The Quenington Sculpture Show. Gloucestershire.
Dec. 1998 Chelsea Arts Club Christmas Show, Chelsea, London.
July – Aug. 1997 Bartley Dray Summer Exhibition, Old Church Street, Chelsea.
June - July 1997 Fresh Air 97, The Quenington Sculpture Show, Gloucestershire.
May 1997 Ramsgate Library Gallery, Kent.
May - July 1996 Exhibition of Contemporary Mosaics, Upstart Gallery, Notting Hill.
Jan - Feb 1996 Building An Image. Exhibition of Mosaics, The Ruskin Craft Gallery.
Dec. 1995 Show of Contemporary Mosaic at Syndicated Arts Gallery, Wapping.
Public Art Commissions: Community Mosaics
2006 Snake tiled Panel. South Borough Primary School.
2006 Thanet Mencap, Turner Triptych
2005 Thanet Mind Garden Gate, Four Seasons Paving Slabs & Sundial.
2000 St Augustine’s Abbey Canterbury, Canterbury Tales Mosaic: The Priest.
2000 Roman Museum, Canterbury, Asaratron. Unswept floor for museum entrance.
1999 Sheerness Library Cheeky Birds Tree of Life.
1997 The Museum of Modern Art Wales The Tale of Taliesin Mosaic.
1996 National Army Museum. Peace Mosaic to celebrate the anniversary of V.E. Day.
Public Art Commissions
2006 Mixed Emotions Mosaic. South Borough Primary School.
2006 Morehall Mosaic. Morehall Primary School
Winter / Spring 2004 Four Seasons Mosaic. Churchill School, Hawkinge, Kent.
Summer / Autumn 2003 Seaside Triptych. Riverhead School, Sevenoaks, Kent.
2001 Queen Mother Centenary Mosaic. Broadstairs, Kent.
2001 Sporting Activities. Ramsgate Leisure Centre, Ramsgate, Kent.
2000 Under the Sea. Debenhams, Guildford, Surrey.
1998 Machynlleth Mala. The Museum of Modern Art Wales.
Martin Cheek. Mosaic Craft. Collins & Brown, 2007.
Martin Cheek. The Art of Mosaic: Design & Inspiration. New Holland, 2002.
Martin Cheek. Making Mosaics. New Holland, 2000.
Martin Cheek. Design Source Book: Mosaics. New Holland, 1998.
Martin Cheek. Mosaics in a Weekend. New Holland, 1997.
Leslie Dierks (Ed.), Martin Cheek (Tech. Advisor). Mosaic. Sterling / Lark, 1995.
Miranda Innes, Martin Cheek (Tech. Advisor). ‘Country Living’ Craft Supplement 1995.
Miranda Innes, Martin Cheek (Tech. Advisor). Decorative Frames. Collins & Brown, 1995.
Peggy Vance, Martin Cheek (Tech. Advisor). The Mosaic Book, Ideas Projects and Techniques. Conran Octopus, 1994.
Art & Craft Magazine, Artists & Illustrators, Country Life, Country Living, Crafts Beautiful, Creative Ideas For Your Home, ES Magazine, Home Style, Homes and Gardens, Homes & Ideas, House Beautiful, Ideal Home, The Independent, Inspirations Magazine, Kent Profile, Kitchens Bedrooms and Bathrooms, The Lady, Monocle Magazine, Perspectives on Architecture, Prospect, The Sunday Times Style Magazine, The Telegraph, The Times Magazine, Woman & Home, The World of Interiors, and Your Home.
Home Front BBC2, The Eleventh Hour BBC1, Cheap Chic UK Living.
Kaleidoscope, BBC Radio Four.

Find out about commissions from Martin Cheek