Ruins Project - BAMM Forum 2020

Rachel Sager talks to Rachel Davies and Helen Miles


Rachel Sager BAMM 2020 The Map Room: Inviting the World to The Ruins Project

Join Rachel Sager as she takes you on a storytelling tour of The Ruins Project, her giant cement canvas in the woods of Pennsylvania coal country. For the last five years, The Ruins has been a venue for excellence in mosaic. Contemporary artists and long dead coal miners, meeting each other on the walls and rooms of concrete, telling each other’s stories. This specialized PowerPoint tour will be tailored to the BAMM audience and will be showcasing two Scottish artists, Rachel Davies and Helen Miles, who are building a mosaic representation of Scotland to be installed at The Map Room at The Ruins. They will be a part of this presentation as they share the story of how Scotland came to Whitsett. As of 2020, over a dozen artists have committed to creating their home countries and more are joining this legacy project all the time.

Rachel Sager is The Forager Mosaicist, the curator and owner of The Ruins Project, and an artistic entrepreneur in the Appalachian Rust Belt. Her innovative mosaics have been showcased around the world and have been awarded multiple Best of Shows. She speaks, teaches, and writes about excellence in contemporary mosaic. Some highlights of her twenty-five year long career are… being interviewed by NPR, having a cameo in the WQED documentary The Great Ride, speaking about the earth beneath us in a TEDtalk, building a mosaic sanctuary in the Irish woods in collaboration with The Spirit of Place, teaching at Jaton School of Mosaic in Buenos Aries, and continuing to build an online library of learning with Mosaic Arts Online. Rachel continues to build a legacy of Intuitive Andamento as she invites artists from around the globe to help her tell the story of coal history at The Ruins Project. Whether she is digging into the earth for geologic tesserae, pushing the boundaries of the classical rules, or giving tours of The Ruins, Rachel has committed her life to the art of mosaic and its power to tell stories.

Helen Miles makes site specific mosaics and one-off commissions. As well as designing and making mosaics, she runs an annual week-long workshop in Greece and classes from her studio in Edinburgh. She is also the Editor of Andamento, BAMM’s journal of Victorian, modern and contemporary mosaic.

Rachel Davies is a mosaic artist based in Scotland. She utilises the beauty of natural materials such as slate and stone to create contemporary mosaic art, with an emphasis on texture and dimension. Rachel splits her time between her personal studio practice, teaching mosaic classes and working with her local community on mosaic projects.  She is also BAMM Chair.