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April 17, 2015

Interior Commercial (Alaska)
The Glenn Massay Theater

Photo courtesy of Bradshaw & Associates
Bradshaw & Associates applied Venetian plaster to the walls to achieve a look resembling brushed suede.

Location: Palmer

Contractor: Bradshaw & Associates

Architect: Kumin Associates

Team: Alaska Industrial Hardware, Alaska Traffic, Safway Services, Salmon Bay Sand & Gravel Co., Vero-Rialto

The Glenn Massay Theater is nestled on a hill overlooking the Matanuska River with a breathtaking view of the Chugach Mountains. It is located on the Mat­anuska-Susitna College campus of the University of Alaska, about 50 miles north of Anchorage. From the 20-foot-high windows mirroring the countryside to state-of-the-art acoustics, orchestra pit and stage, the Glenn Massay Theater is a work of art.

Bradshaw & Associates applied Venetian plaster to the 20-foot-tall walls according to architect’s specifications. Color changes posed special challenges, considering the costly pigments flown in from Italy and other parts of the world. Scheduling the shipping to accommodate cold weather was of utmost importance.

Some training was required to ensure proper application of the Venetian plaster. Lisa Milligan of Vero flew to Alaska to train local plasterers, using local samples on specific techniques including modeling, depth of color and movement. Consistency of color and texture were crucial in achieving the desired effect with the stormy blue pigment applied to walls. Variations in texture and color play off the theater lighting, and the result resembles brushed suede or lush velvet.

Judge’s comment: “The craftsmanship demonstrated in the installation of the Venetian plaster have made for a spectacular project. Along with the design features, the team has created a theater that is both functional and beautiful. Students at the University of Alaska will reap the benefits from this outstanding project for many years.”

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