Where is the Hearst Castle?
Hearst Castle was the palatial estate of newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst. It is located near San Simeon, California, on a hill overlooking the Pacific Ocean, halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Donated by the Hearst Corporation to the state of California in 1957, it is now a State Historical Monument and a National Historic Landmark, open for public tours. Hearst formally named the estate ‘La Cuesta Encantada’ (‘The Enchanted Hill’), but he usually just called it ‘the ranch’.
Hearst Castle – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Hearst Castle Roman Pool Mosaics on Flickr – by patacancha
The Casa Grande Roman Pool
The pool appears to be styled after an ancient Roman bath such as the Baths of Caracalla in Rome c. 211-17 AD. The mosaic tiled patterns were inspired by mosaics found in the 5th Century Mausoleum of Galla Placidia in Ravenna, Italy. They are also representative of traditional marine monster themes that can be found in ancient Roman baths.
The Roman Pool Hearst Castle on Flickr – by eye_fish
The Roman Pool is decorated from ceiling to floor with 1″ square mosaic tiles. These glass tiles, called smalti, are either colored (mainly blue or orange) or are clear with fused gold inside. The intense colors and shimmering gold of the tiles combine to create a breathtaking effect. The designs created by the tiles were developed by muralist Camille Solon.
Hearst pool bottom mosaic detail on Flickr – by vikram_muthanna
Bottom of the indoor pool mosaic detail on Flickr – by SFAntti
Hearst Castle Pool bottom mosaic detail on Flickr – Rock and Racehorses
Hearst Castle Roman Pool mosaics on Flickr – by Sandra Leidholdt
Mosaic wall & floor detail on Flickr – by Stellae et Luna
Mosaic Design Inspiration
The inspiration for some of these designs came from the 5th Century Mausoleum of Galla Placidia. Hearst was affected by the beauty of the mosaics in the mausoleum and incorporated similar styles into his Roman Pool. The walls of the mausoleum are marble but the vaulted arches are composed of blue and gold smalti. The roofs and dome are covered with mosaics of night blue, powdered with stars. The Roman Pool is similar to the mausoleum with its blue and gold color scheme and stylized star patterns. It differs because marble was only used in the statues, not on the walls, and their are no religious murals.
The Roman Pool at Hearst Castle
Hearst Castle wall mosaic detail on Flickr – by Rock and Racehorses
Hearst Castle Mosaic floor detail on Flickr – by Isalcedo
Mosaic Floor Tile Detail. on Flickr – by blisseau
Roman Crab mosaic floor detail on Flickr – by Stellae et Luna
Mosaic Gold tesserae texture detail on Flickr – by klabhead
Mosaic Art Source mosaic definition:
gold leaf tesserae (mosaic gold)
gold leaf tesserae (mosaic gold) – 24k gold-leaf tesserae are made up of a glass support layer (usually transparent, at times opaque red or coloured) less than one centimetre thick. The 24k gold metal leaf is then sandwiched between the support and a thin protective glass layer (the cartellina). In tesserae the colour shade is determined by the purity of the metal, the thickness of the leaf, the colour, if any, of the cartellina and of the support. m.a.s.mosaic glossary
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Is there any lisitng of the craftsmen who did the actual gold leaf work during the construction?
This is beautiful. I love the wonderful mosaic tiles. Adding the gold leaf gives this a timeless elegance. I hope to visit one day and see it in person.
I want a pool!!! Nice photos.
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No, he was inspired by Mausoleuomof Galla Placidia in Ravenna, Italy
Does anyone know whether William Randolph Hearst ever visited Palacio da Pena, in Sintra Portugal. The tile and mosaics there look SO much like some of those at Hearst Castle. I wonder if he was inspired by them??
I love it! I did a post on the Hearst Castle a while back and had only seen photos in a book. These are utterly spectacular! Thanks for sharing these!
The pools are 10 feet deep, Maria.
I believe that only the large pool is 10 feet deep, but the pool in the back just beyond the arches are only about3 feet deep. From what I heard on the tour, that’s where all the action took place… if you get what I mean! 😉
the decorations are very pretty. and when i am old enough i hope to visit
WOW ITS VARY LOVELY AN I HOPE TO VISIT SOME DAY .
HOW DEEP IS YOUR POOLS?
Didn’t Antonio Falcier, who worked with the WPA in Northern California, assist on some of these mosaics too? Does anyone out there have any info on this person and his work????
Thanks for using my photos and leading me to this blog! I really enjoyed reading. 🙂