As part of this year's Blog Action Day, my entry is about a project that has consumed much of my personal and work life for the past year and a half. On October first, this year, the National Shrine of Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini was opened once more to the public. After being closed for almost ten years, it underwent a remarkable transformation as the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus set up a new Mission in the city of Chicago.
I work for the architectural firm that oversaw the restoration and addition to the chapel and though I had the fortune of taking part in many aspects of design and construction, a vast majority of my efforts were spent on the design and coordination of the exhibits about Mother Cabrini's life and work and the recreation of the bedroom where she died.
Bernacki & Associates. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity to work on a project that pushed my skills and creativity and served a purpose that seemed much greater than the typical architectural projects that I work on.
All of the photographs in the exhibits are mounted to aluminum plates and mounted to the walls with cleats. Many of the images were scanned and enhanced by Paul Lane of Photo Source. The printing and mounting, as well as the printing of the wallpapers and text panels was done by Printmakers Chicago in conjunction with Digitial Imaging Resources. The text panels are printed on frosted acrylic panels that are mounted to the walls on metal standoffs.
I hope that the housbloggers that typically follow my blog would find this post and some of the technical aspect of this work interesting. It is the first time where my interest in history and design have come together this way and it was a remarkable project to work on. More germane to Blog Action Day, I hope that people take the time to visit the Shrine and are inspired by the selflessness and work of the Missionary Sisters and are inspired to join others to become a part of something bigger than themselves.