Los Angeles City Hall Board of Public Works

Los Angeles, CA

During the investigation, our team documented the conditions of the plaster and painted surfaces, carried out tests to determine the best methods of stabilizing the paint and plaster, and created treatment mock-ups in selected areas of the vaulted ceiling and decorative arches. Our primary goal during this phase was to provide recommendations and cost estimates for our future conservation and restoration work in the building. We found the paint layer in very poor condition, exhibiting both cohesive and adhesive failure due to the deterioration of the binding medium. This resulted in an under-bound and powdery paint film. This issue was exacerbated by fluctuations in temperature and humidity inside the room. Along with the decades of visitor traffic, this had caused the paint to flake and chip away.

In our second phase of work, our conservators returned to conserve the ceiling with the methodologies they recommended in the investigation phase. We began with the plaster and treated lifting areas of plaster to prevent future delamination problems, surface cleaned, and filled plaster losses to match the original surface texture. For our decorative painting and finishes scope, we repainted using a matte finish paint system and applied size and gold leaf areas of metallic finishes.

Below is a time-lapse of the ceiling progress in the Edward R. Roybal Board of Public Works Session Room.