The United States Survey

Charles Clement

Venetian, Japanese, and American Tiles of Glass and Gold

The United States Survey by Charles Clement

About this piece

The United States Survey shows a group of surveyors at work on the right side of the mural. Behind them and to the right, a colorful world advances. The surveyors point to the mural’s left, which shows the plains, bison, homesteaders, and Native Americans. This mural depicts the changes that came with westward expansion.

Charles Clement used a unique method to create this mosaic where tiles made of glass and gold, pot shards, and pebbles were inlaid in a cement matrix.

About Charles Clement

Charles Clement was born in New York City in 1921. At a time when art and architecture were moving toward clean, unadorned designs, Clement was known for bucking the trend and creating depth with three-dimensional artist abstractions that elevated the architectural intention of a building.

When he was awarded a mural for the Nebraska State Capitol, he constructed it outside his studio in Tuscon because it was too large to fit inside. Clement died in 1981 but is still considered to be an essential figure in Tuscon’s history.

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