Decorative ceramic tiles blending turn of the century and original designs
Motawi Tileworks’ art tile aesthetic is firmly rooted in the turn of the century Arts and Crafts style. Nawal Motawi, founder of Motawi Tileworks, was first exposed to the tile of the Arts & Crafts Movement at Pewabic Pottery, which she visited during her first college ceramics class. “My professor had just completed a gigantic tile mural created with Pewabic Pottery, which he took us all to see,” says Nawal, “and I immediately began to fantasize about someday making tilework like that!” In 1992 she set out on her own, starting what soon became the Motawi Tileworks. Her brother Karim joined her as a business partner after graduating from college later that year. Motawi tile designs are a blend of art from the turn of the century and the Motawi’s design sensibility. The designs are brought to life by a tile-making process which is a journey itself. Improving their techniques of pressing, glazing, and mold-making is a bit of an obsession in the studio. The artful tile—the outcome of this shared obsession—is evidence that this duo and their artisan team is at the top of their craft.