Motawi Tileworks has created a new collection of tiles based on the work of beloved wildlife artist Charley Harper (1922-2007) called “Charley Harper by Motawi.” The line consists of 11 designs in a variety of sizes, with new designs to be added over time. Mr. Harper’s signature motifs— ladybugs and cardinals—figure prominently in this opening collection.
Charley Harper was an American minimal realist artist based in Cincinnati. His vibrant and original depictions of the natural world have illustrated books, served as informative posters, and graced countless walls as art prints. Founder and Artistic Director of Motawi Tileworks, Nawal Motawi, says “Mr. Harper’s artwork is modern, sophisticated, and completely charming. It was brought to my attention several years ago and I immediately discerned that his graphic style would lend itself well to our tile-making technique.” However it wasn’t until 2011 that Motawi got serious about pursuing Mr. Harper’s work and eventually tracked down the licensing agent, renowned designer Todd Oldham.
A fan of Harper’s in his childhood, Todd rediscovered Mr. Harper’s work in 2001 and collaborated with him in the years following. Together, they pored over Mr. Harper’s extensive archive, which resulted in Todd editing and designing the definitive books on his work, Charley Harper: An Illustrated Life, and in the fall of 2012, Charley Harper’s Animal Kingdom.