10 Amazing Fact about the new Basilica Mosaic

The Apparition Mosaic Basilica of Our Lady, Queen of Ireland

• The mosaic represents the Apparition at Knock on August 21st 1879 as described in the statements of 15 official witnesses

• The mosaic was officially unveiled on February 28th, 2016

• The entire mosaic, from commissioning the project to the official unveiling, took more than two years.

• The image was illustrated by the famous Irish artist PJ Lynch (prominent children’s book illustrator)

• The mosaic was made in a town called Spilimbergo, which is near Venice, Italy, by Giovanni Travisanutto srl

• There are more than 1.5 million individual pieces of mosaic in the artwork

• Giovanni Travisanutto srl are some of the best mosaic makers in the world and have worked on mosaics at other important religious sites such as the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalum

• It took over eight months to piece together the mosaic in Italy before it was transported in over 300 sections by artic truck to Knock, Co Mayo, in early January

• The mosaic is made predominantly (approx 80 %) from Venetian glass smalti (traditional hand-cut mosaic glass). The rest (15%) is natural marble mosaic and the remaining 5% is made of gold smalti (glass and gold leaf)

• The mosaic at Knock Shrine is a ‘beacon of light and hope for pilgrims’ (Archbishop of Tuam Michael Neary) and the centerpiece of a major renewal project at Knock Shrine called ‘Witness to Hope’