ACL Project List

From the onset of the project, it was decided that the map pavement must remain an integral part of the Pavilion regardless of pavement condition or the ultimate re-use of the structure. It was also decided that the treatments should attempt to preserve as much of the original fabric as possible, given the hand-made nature of the map, and to structurally and visually reintegrate the design with compatible yet discernible materials and techniques. The ultimate question was whether the pavement could continue to serve as a functional floor or if its condition would necessitate its display as an exhibit with restricted access. Damage to the pavement after years of exposure and deferred maintenance has left it quite fragile, which in turn has limited the options for repair and reuse. The uneven surface of the terrazzo caused collectively by the deterioration of the structural support and the erosion of the terrazzo surface is impossible to reverse and the majority of the tiles are too fragile and irregular to undergo the traditional techniques of resurfacing typically used by terrazzo companies to restore floors.


Additionally, the aged appearance of the pavement is an important component of its 44-year history. There is an interesting contradiction between the weathered appearance of the pavement and its relative youth. It is more akin to an ancient pavement in appearance, than suggested by its age and image as an innovative work of Pop Art from the 1960’s. Conservators who work on ancient mosaic pavements are faced with many of the same technical challenges exhibited at the New York State Pavilion pavement. The ultimate approach taken for the conservation of the terrazzo pavement utilizes contemporary materials but borrows the techniques and values from ancient mosaic conservation.
Tile number BG-44 “Moriches” before conservation. Each tile was given an alpha-numeric code which allowed for easy identification. Numbers represented the horizontal value of the rows and the Letters represented the vertical value of the columns.
Tile number BG-44 “Moriches” after conservation. In addition to the Alpha-numeric code, all tiles were identified by the name of a large community represented within that tile. This added in locating where each tile sat within the map.