Mosaics and mosaic making information from The joy of shards Mosaics Resource

Niki de Saint Phalle's Tarot Garden

The Empress takes the form of a sphinx. Inside is a large living space, a womb of sparkling mirror glass. Her huge breasts provide nourishment and shelter - there is a kitchen in one and a bedroom in the other. She is a representation of feminine productivity, fruitfulness and fertility.

As with the rest of the Garden, this structure was built up from rods of welded iron and steel. A wire mesh was stretched over this armature, then sprayed with concrete. The surface of the concrete was finished by hand before the mosaic of tiles, mirrors and handmade ceramics was applied.

Running over The Empress' back is a roof terrace which looks out towards the Mediterranean.

tarot garden empress

empress terrace


The roof terrace. The walls are adorned with stars, planets and other celestial objects. We tried to imagine how it would be to visit by moonlight.....


The bathroom. This snake functions as the shower unit.

mosaic snake

empress door


The doorway of The Empress.

(The Priestess)

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(The Emperor)

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