Blog posts, Community mosaics, Galleries, Mosaics made for Architectural Surfaces, Mosaics made in China
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Starting to work in Beijing

This air vent structure is standing around in a beautiful spot under big plantain trees in our compound in Beijing. When I saw it I thought it would give a good object to decorate with mosaic. The management of the compound agreed and I set of to start to draw it, take measurements etc. My newly found old friend Sanny Wroblewski (whom I met already 5 years ago when we were posted in Turkey) joined me with her graphic design skills to turn the ugly cement blog into a dragon. The compound is named – Julong Hua Yuan – which means all dragons garden. One day we set off to get dragon- inspired.

That was fun. Now the work begins: finding tiles and cement, fibre netting and transparent adhesive, getting the tools and the production process ready. The idea is to involve the community of the compound. The tricky point is: its all in Chinese. Today with the help of my housekeeper Xu I talked to a tile selling company. It works like this: I write my points in English on the WeChat app to Xu, she translates it into Chinese in the app and then can chat with the tile manufacturer in the south of China on the Taobao platform which is the Ebay equivalent here. A bit complicated but it worked!


  1. Gertrude, great to catch up with your latest adventures. Such an exciting life you lead! We met at SAMA in Tennessee. Your dragon air vent will be a great addition to the park. I look forward to seeing it completed. Pam Stratton

  2. Gertrud Müller says

    Hi, could you please send me a short email or comment here if you got this new blog as a subscriber? I am under the impression the subscription function does not work.

  3. Miriam A Engstrom says

    Another wonderful project in the works! I love that you and Sanny are collaborating, along with the community, to bring more beauty into the world. I love this, so much! Cheers to you both!

  4. Bonnie Fitzgerald says

    I so enjoy your updates! Keep at it lady. You are doing good work.

  5. Great to see you getting started on this community project….. looking forward to see it all come together!

  6. Fabulous Gertrud! So glad to hear you are ready to make more mosaics. Love the dragon design, and will look for your next post about how and when you are starting to work on it with the community.

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