Mosaic vs. Collage - What's the difference?

Main Difference

The main difference between Mosaic and Collage is that the Mosaic is a image made from an assemblage of small pieces of colored glass, stone, or other materials and Collage is a technique of art production using assemblage of different forms.


A mosaic is a piece of art or image made from the assemblage of small pieces of colored glass, stone, or other materials. It is often used in decorative art or as interior decoration. Most mosaics are made of small, flat, roughly square, pieces of stone or glass of different colors, known as tesserae. Some, especially floor mosaics, are made of small rounded pieces of stone, and called "pebble mosaics". Mosaics have a long history, starting in Mesopotamia in the 3rd millennium BC. Pebble mosaics were made in Tiryns in Mycenean Greece; mosaics with patterns and pictures became widespread in classical times, both in Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome. Early Christian basilicas from the 4th century onwards were decorated with wall and ceiling mosaics. Mosaic art flourished in the Byzantine Empire from the 6th to the 15th centuries; that tradition was adopted by the Norman Kingdom of Sicily in the 12th century, by the eastern-influenced Republic of Venice, and among the Rus in Ukraine. Mosaic fell out of fashion in the Renaissance, though artists like Raphael continued to practise the old technique. Roman and Byzantine influence led Jewish artists to decorate 5th and 6th century synagogues in the Middle East with floor mosaics. Mosaic was widely used on religious buildings and palaces in early Islamic art, including Islam's first great religious building, the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, and the Umayyad Mosque in Damascus. Mosaic went out of fashion in the Islamic world after the 8th century. Modern mosaics are made by professional artists, street artists, and as a popular craft. Many materials other than traditional stone and ceramic tesserae may be employed, including shells, glass and beads.


Collage (from the French: coller, "to glue"; French pronunciation: ​[kɔ.laʒ]) is a technique of an art production, primarily used in the visual arts, where the artwork is made from an assemblage of different forms, thus creating a new whole. A collage may sometimes include magazine and newspaper clippings, ribbons, paint, bits of colored or handmade papers, portions of other artwork or texts, photographs and other found objects, glued to a piece of paper or canvas. The origins of collage can be traced back hundreds of years, but this technique made a dramatic reappearance in the early 20th century as an art form of novelty. The term collage was coined by both Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso in the beginning of the 20th century when collage became a distinctive part of modern art.

Mosaic vs. Collage


1. Alternative forms

  • mosaick (obsolete)

2. Etymology

From Middle French mosaïque, from Italian mosaico, from Medieval Latin musaicum, from Late Latin musivum (opus), from Latin museum, musaeum, probably from Ancient Greek Μουσεῖον (Mouseîon), shrine of the Muses (Μοῦσα (Moûsa)).

3. Pronunciation

  • (UK) IPA(key): /məʊˈzeɪɪk/
  • (US) IPA(key): /moʊˈzeɪɪk/
  • Rhymes: -eɪɪk

4. Noun

mosaic (countable and uncountable, plural mosaics)

  1. A piece of artwork created by placing colored squares (usually tiles) in a pattern so as to create a picture.
  2. (genetics) An individual composed of two or more cell lines of different genetic or chromosomal constitution, but from the same zygote.
  3. (phytopathology) Any of several viral diseases that cause mosaic-like patterns to appear on leaves.
  4. A composite picture made from overlapping photographs.

5. Adjective

mosaic (not comparable)

  1. (of an individual) Containing cells of varying genetic constitution.
  • alphamosaic
  • mosaicism
  • mosaicist
  • photomosaic

6. See also

  • mosaic on Wikipedia.Wikipedia
  • Mosaic (disambiguation) on Wikipedia.Wikipedia

7. References

  • Redslob, Gustav Moritz (1860), “Über den Ausdruck „Mosaïk“”, in Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft, volume 14, pages 663–678

8. Anagrams

  • Amicos, Samoic


1. Etymology

Borrowed from French collage.

2. Pronunciation

  • (UK) IPA(key): /kɒˈlɑːʒ/, /kəˈlɑːʒ/, /ˈkɒl.ɑːʒ/
  • (US) enPR: kə-läzh', kō-läzh', IPA(key): /kəˈlɑʒ/, /koʊˈlɑʒ/
  • ,

3. Noun

collage (countable and uncountable, plural collages)

  1. A picture made by sticking other pictures onto a surface.
  2. A composite object or collection (abstract or concrete) created by the assemblage of various media; especially for a work of art such as text, film, etc..
    • "Richard Brautigan's novel So the Wind Won't Blow It All Away is a collage of memories."
  3. (uncountable) The technique of producing a work of art of this kind.

3.1. See also

  • montage

4. Verb

collage (third-person singular simple present collages, present participle collaging, simple past and past participle collaged)

  1. (transitive) To make into a collage.

5. See also

  • collage on Wikipedia.Wikipedia
  • collage on Wikimedia Commons.Wikimedia Commons

6. Anagrams

  • alcogel

Popular Comparisons
Recently Compared