Preston Gardens Park is located in the Preston Gardens area of downtown Baltimore, MD. A graffiti-vandalism event occurred in February 2015, amounting to approximately 154 square feet of spray-paint defacement. We were engaged by the Downtown Partnership of Baltimore (DPOB) to test graffiti removal products, and the testing program as training for DPOB staff. The collaborative plan was to identify the best sequence of products, removing some graffiti, and train DPOB staff to complete the remaining graffiti removal.
Areas were chosen and painters’ tape was used to partition test spots. Five treatments were tested. After treatment, some graffiti reduction was apparent in each test area. Based on nuances of the testing, a treatment for the Preston Gardens Park graffiti was planned using repeat applications of medium-pressure washing, poultice, scrubbing with nylon bristle brushes, and clean water rinse. Once the treatment was established, our conservators provided training and extensive written treatment recommendations for graffiti removal to DPOB staff, including a guide detailing procedures and best practices in handling graffiti removal from masonry and stone surfaces.