Inspired by the Red Cedar River, this 2012 mosaic portrays the ever-changing translucence of the water feature as it reflects the many images of campus life. The fabrication technique utilizes a combination of hand-formed ceramics in various oblong shapes and sizes, as well as small irregular pieces of glass byzantine smalti, and hand-glazed ceramic. The glazes were formulated to achieve a nuanced surface that represents rippling water. The special oblong pieces were glazed individually for each specifi c location so that the tree branches run through them, knitting together the overall composition. By featuring the river, Karlsen completes the natural feel of the building with an image that brings to mind Michigan’s natural beauty and a unique and popular feature of campus.
The piece is made of H\hand glazed ceramic tile and measures 96 inches by 144 inches.