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The Golden Carp

David Arnott insists that he “wouldn’t go using anything else” following a successful four-year partnership with the Laticrete UK brand, which is part of Liverpool-based Palace Chemicals.

The Manchester-based artist has previously worked on luxury projects, including the world’s most expensive roulette table, which he made in collaboration with the designer Debbie Wingham, featuring no less than £30,000 worth of 24-carat gold tile, Swarovski crystals and a real black diamond, alongside Laticrete UK and Palace Chemicals products. David recently mixed diamond dust with Spectralock Pro Premium Grout from Laticrete on a mosaic of Manchester United’s Old Trafford ground. Now he has used his winning Spectralock and a diamond dust mix on his latest creations: a 6ft by 5ft picture of koi carp using 24-carat gold tiles, Swarovski crystals, natural stone, and porcelain tile; and a luxury bath tub which he covered with mosaic tiles in a cobalt blue butterfly design. 

Arnott is branching out from his mosaics to set up a sister company, called Mosaic7, specialising in interior design products, including mosaic-covered luxury baths. Mosaic7 has been established with Arnott’s business partner, Steven Singh, and is named after the Manchester M7 postcode they grew up in. Arnott, who was a working on a mosaic piece as a guest of Laticrete UK at the Cersaie International Exhibition of Ceramic Tile and Bathroom Furnishings in Bologna, Italy, on 23rd September, said: “I’ve launched a sister company, in addition to my stand-alone mosaics. It’s going to specialise in luxury baths. Being able to use the best products that are on the market, and the exposure that Laticrete UK has given me, has certainly helped push me and given me the confidence to branch out.” Arnott also used the 254 Platinum adhesive from Laticrete on the koi carp mosaic and bath tub, as well as the Laticrete Hydro Ban waterproofing membrane on the carp piece, and Palace Chemicals Grab & Fix MS polymer adhesive on the tub respectively. “They are the best products on the market,” says Arnott. “I wouldn’t go using anything else, especially on high-value work.”

A private London-based client supplied him with the koi carp image and the piece, which took two months to create, will go over their stairs. It also features Smalti and Saloni tiles. The butterfly tub will be part of a collection of eight bath tubs and is currently in the Hyperion Tiles showroom in Marlow, Buckinghamshire. It took around three months to create and featured “a lot more work than I thought it would be,” admitted Arnott, “due to having to follow the tricky contours of the bath.’ Palace Grab & Fix was ideal to stick on the mosaic pieces onto the vertical surface. Spectralock is a patented, high performance epoxy grout that offers excellent colour uniformity, durability, stain protection, and beautiful, full grout joints in an easy-to-use, non-sag formula.

It is designed for use on ceramic tile, glass tile and stone applications, both residential and commercial. It can be used on both interior and exterior on floors and walls. Ideal for re-grouting applications, Spectralock is perfect for swimming pools, fountains and other wet area applications. Laticrete 254 Platinum is a superior polymer-fortified adhesive for interior and exterior installation of ceramic tile, stone, quarry tile, pavers, porcelain, stonework and brick slips. It is mixed with water to give an easy to apply paste which has a long open time with unsurpassed adhesion and workability. It cures to give the highest level of adhesion strength, far exceeding the standard requirements, making it ideal for interior, exterior and submerged applications in some of the most challenging environments imaginable.

Hydro Ban is a thin, load-bearing waterproofing/crack isolation membrane that does not require the use of fabric in the field, coves or corners. A single-component self-curing liquid rubber polymer that forms a flexible, seamless waterproofing membrane, Hydro Ban bonds directly to a wide variety of substrates. It allows for flood testing in two hours at 21°C or higher, bonding directly to metal, PVC and ABS plumbing fixtures and is only 0.5–0.8 mm thick when cured. Palace Grab & Fix MS Polymer Adhesive provides fixing performance of the highest possible standard by combining unique instant grab consistency, with the latest MS polymer technology, to ensure instant high strength bonding across the most difficult and diverse range of surfaces.  

It has initial bond strength double that of most other grab adhesives and does not require secondary support for most typically encountered high load bearing applications. It can be used internally or externally or even during damp conditions onto wet surfaces, is solvent-free and is available in white or clear. Charles Clapham, Managing Director of Palace Chemicals, said: “Being associated with Laticrete UK products has given David the confidence to set up a second business and we wish him luck in his new venture. For a renowned artist such as David to give our high spec products his backing is a real boost. Long may our partnership continue.”

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