Citation for Art Preservation
A Special Citation for Mural Preservation is given for the restoration of Wayne Thiebaud’s “Water City” tile mural at the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) Headquarters. Completed in 1960 by Dreyfuss & Blackford Architects, the SMUD Headquarters building is a modernist icon. After 60 years of continuous use, this extensive rehabilitation took a holistic approach, considering the site’s “park-like” landscape, the building envelope and central core, and the unique mural by internationally recognized artist Wayne Thiebaud. Constructed of Italian glass mosaic tile, the mural was entirely cleaned and repaired including grout and tile replacement where necessary. Lighting of the mural was critically important, and a high efficiency LED lighting system was employed to evenly illuminate the mural. This award recognizes the project team for their approach to the mural preservation, recognizing it as a significant design element and embracing it as an equally important aspect of the of the larger restoration project.
“The public agency should be commended for respecting the truly excellent piece of environmentally sensitive architecture they are charged with, including the mosaic mural.”
Sacramento Municipal Utility District
Dreyfuss + Blackford Architecture, Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc.
The building and site were listed on the National Register of Historic Places and California Register of Historical Resources in 2010.