Ceramic Tile Repair and Reinstallation for Granizo Mural

Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, 
California, USA

A ceramic tile mural by William Granizo, comissioned for the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics at the site of the judo events, had begun to fail, with some tiles falling to the ground after deterioration of the mortar setting bed. The ceramic tile restoration and reinstallation required meticulous preservation, as there was cracking throughout the entire mural.

Before removing each individual tile, we identified several that were already cracked from previous movement in the setting bed and substrate. We removed all 2,500 tiles using light-impact demolition hammers with specially modified chisels to minimize local damage. For each tile, our artisans used an acrylic-based coating formulated with UV-resistant components to give the optimum combination of performance and color-matching. Before reinstallation, we applied an anti-fracture membrane to the wall, providing an additional level of protection to the tiles from internal movement of the substrate. We also applied a water-repellent sealer to the joints after final grouting. The next maintenance cycle for this extraordinary work should be significantly longer.

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