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Oceanside, CA

Quiet and Respectful

Baughman was required to install this material seamlessly... and quietly

Michael Baughman’s creativity is not in dispute; he won three out of four categories in the Wallpaper Installers Association Awards, including this wallcovering installation project, where he installed painted canvas murals on some oddly shaped chapel walls.

“The Getty Conservation Institute recommended Polytab, a non-woven fabric that is also known as parachute cloth, as being more stable to the artist,” he said. Lighter than artist canvas, the materials can take on the form of the substrate they are applied to. For this reason, this material, normally used in the garment industry, is making inroads as part of large public mural art projects. All surfaces to receive Polytab had one coat of Draw Tite white primer applied.

The most challenging part of this was the dome, which had a removable center section to service the cell tower above. “I found the access panel just rested on a small rim and would lift easily. Like a manhole cover, it was round and I could not fall through… I hoped,” he said.

The center of the dome was covered using two separate pieces of Polytab with seams down the middle, then trimmed tight to the round edge of the access panel since the same piece had to cover the dome perimeter and four triangular ceiling sections. Then he double cut the Polytab overlap seam for a butted seam. Since the same piece of Polytab canvas would be used for the four back insets and the four front insets – with little bleed between pieces to trim and separate – it demanded a completely clean install.

Finally, because it was a chapel – in use – he had to work quietly to respect the environment. He trod lightly up and down the scaffolding, and he needed quiet fans running to keep it cool in the chapel’s dome, where some of the most detailed and difficult installation took place. Along with that, there were 90- minute work stoppages twice a day due to religious services – all on a deadline! In the end, however, the collaboration of Baughman and the mural artist resulted in some stunning work – it might even get people to church more often.

Corner panels were especially challenging
Decorated fabric awaits installation.

Key Products

  • Polytab
  • Draw Tite white primer
  • Nova Gel Adhesive