The piano room was the last of several components I did for this stunning and historic San Diego home by famed local architect Frank Hope between 2005 and 2008.
The vertical wall panels behind are done in a water based faux finish glaze over a soft yellow base that matches the walls of the room I’m standing in as I take the picture. (Those walls were the first component I did for the house.)
The main feature of this room is the grand piano, and the polished plaster ceiling treatment is designed to resemble the faux-on-yellow but add a jewel box type of glow and resonance to the room commensurate with the grand piano itself.
A lot of this impact has to do with the glassy sheen of venetian plaster when burnished and how it echoes the high polish of the piano. Not only did I burnish this whole room myself, I also created the patina with a tinted, hand applied wax and polished a second time to get the final effect. Everything in the house is edged in varnished woodwork except this room with its painted white trim, so the polished plaster supplies a missing material authenticity to the piano’s environment as well, connecting it to the rest of the house without diminishing the intended special emphasis.