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Banners for a corporate birthday

Graphics | January 1, 2013 | By:

The project. Hearst Corp. wanted to commemorate its 125th anniversary by incorporating a visual display in the lobby of its Manhattan offices. The company wanted the high-impact display to coordinate with its outside advertising campaign while complementing the interior architectural style of the building.

The company. Hearst Corp. approached Color X Inc. of New York City to execute this project.

The task. Color X was to fabricate banners that would hang in the 100-foot tall atrium. This area in the Hearst Tower is approximately the size of three quarters of a city block, and the display needed to fill the space, creating a tasteful impact. Dye sublimation on poplin fabric was chosen as a high-end alternative to a vinyl display.

The challenge. Producing double-sided dye sublimation at such a large scale was a new challenge for Color X, as proper registration for a single piece so large requires very specific knowledge of materials and equipment. They also had to conceal engineering hardware while utilizing existing architecture for support, all while installing the project from 50 to 100 feet in the air.

The solution. The installation was executed at night on a weekend to avoid pedestrian traffic, making working from such heights less risky. Color X created custom hardware with a tension system that allowed a coupling between the existing architectural support beam and the banner, according to Color X’s Gary Teich. The 18 double-sided, seamless banners each measured 4.5 feet by 29 feet and included a block-out layer. They were printed on a Mimaki 3.3 meter printer using eight-color dye sub inks. The banners featured Hearst’s various achievements, including book and magazine publishing, visual arts and music, following the aesthetic of its advertising campaign while creating a visual impact in the lobby.

The result. The execution was seen as a great success. “Everything was spectacular,” said Teich. “The colors were bright and consistent, the hardware performed flawlessly and everything was installed on time for Hearst’s opening event ceremonies. Hearst was beyond thrilled.”

Amy Overgaard is a freelance writer and barista in St. Paul, Minn.

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