In mid 2010 Nola Diamantopoulos was awarded The Goulburn Mosaic Commission at the historic old Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul’s.
This massive mosaic work commemorating the life of Caroline Chisholm contains three panels each measuring 300cm high & 72.5cm wide and is made of smalti, presenting a great challenge for the not so tall Nola.
In case you aren’t sure what smalti is, it’s basically little mosaic tiles made by mixing molten glass with metal oxides for color; the result is a cloudy mixture that is poured into flat slabs that are cooled and broken into individual pieces. Smalti tile, sometimes referred to as Byzantine glass mosaic tile, are typically opaque glass tiles that were originally developed for use in mosaics created during the time of the Byzantine Empire.
This commission has involved loads of research into the achievements and milestones of Caroline Chisholm who, according to Wikipedia… "was a progressive 19th-century English humanitarian known mostly for her involvement with female immigrant welfare in Australia. She is commemorated in the Calendar of saints of the Church of England. There are proposals for the Catholic Church to also recognise her as a saint. (b. 30 May 1808 – d. 25 March 1877)".
After many months of hard work, the finished mosaic at St Peter & Paul's Cathedral in Goulburn will be unveiled on 29 June 2011. The mosaic will be unveiled by Governor-General Quentin Bryce following on from a special Mass celebrated by the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Canberra-Goulburn, Dr Mark Coleridge starting at 10.30am.