An Architectural Homage
Service Point creates a graphic-display tribute to Yale University dean.
It’s no small honor to be recognized by the Yale University School of Architecture. So when the school set out to pay tribute to its former dean – renowned British architect James Stirling – with a special exhibit of his work, an extraordinary group of professionals came together. The curator was from London, there was a local graphic designer, and the Yale Exhibits department and School of Architecture students were involved. Also in the mix: the graphics’ printer and install team from Service Point in nearby Woburn, Massachusetts, led by Mike Hughes.
“Yale University School of Architecture was our client, and they produced the design work,” explains Hughes. “We did typesetting for some of the graphics, but most of the image files were 1200-dpi EPS files, which we were able to work with right away – not too much was necesasary in the way of file manipulation. This saved us time because it was a multi-piece project, with pieces suspended from the ceiling and floor graphics, as well.”
All told, the exhibit encompassed more than 300 of Stirling’s original architectural drawings, models, and photographs, all rendered and installed by Service Point.
With print-ready files in hand, Service Point used its HP Designjet L25500 with Onyx PosterShop v7.0 RIP to print the array of graphics onto various substrates, all using HP latex inks.
“Most of it was printed on a poly-adhesive paper, QMLS Quality DuraVinyl 352, which has adhesive already on it, and an awful lot of it was getting mounted to 3A Composites Fome-Cor,” says Hughes. “It was pretty amazing that the material was able to stick to several different substrates, including floor tile. One of the images went across the floor and then up a brick wall and across an archway that you go under, and then wrapped back around to the floor.”
For high-traffic areas, the company used Quality DuraVinyl 310 for concrete, and Ritrama Ri-Jet 145 [part of its Floor Talkers system] for the wood floors.
“We laminated the floor graphics (both concrete and wood) with Quality Instashield FG using our Seal 6000 laminator,” says Hughes.
Several display mounts used throughout the exhibit had to be fabricated and, in the interest of time, Service Point outsourced some of the fabrication to the Yale School of Drama, whose students applied their knowledge of set-building to crafting aluminum and metal display stands.
“A lot of it we were able to do ourselves, but some of it, for instance the curved pieces, we sent out for fabrication and we just adhered the graphics to them,” says Hughes.
The installation went off flawlessly, according to Hughes, who estimates it took about two weeks. “I think the floor graphic probably took the most time, it’s almost like a trail you’re following through the building,” he says. “We had three people there during most of the install and the building wasn’t occupied yet, so we were actually setting up the exhibit.”
The job was something of a culmination of all the disparate elements his company has worked on separately in the past, Hughes says.
“On the installation piece, it was pretty much everything that we’ve done in the past all combined into one large project. That was the challenging part because usually you’ll have the client come back and say, ‘I want a wall mural,’ or ‘I want a poster,’ or ‘I want a vehicle graphic or floor graphics window graphics.’ But not often do they come and say, ‘I want the whole piece.’ That’s what this was, and it was fun to work on.”