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  The History of the

  Ceiling Medallion

 

 

 

 

  The Art of Medallions                                   

 

   These jewels of the ceiling have been around  for a long time and are

   the focal point of interior design.  In earlier homes of distinction they

   were hand crafted in plaster then painted or foiled with gold in only

   the palaces of the elite. As an applied delicate ceiling motif, it took

   artisans hundreds of hours to create and install these gems by hand.

 

 

  Finally, a less complicated idea from Greek and Roman times allowed the medallion

  to be cast from plaster as a whole piece and actually be plastered in place on the ceiling

  as one unit.  This allowed for mass production of this magnificent art form making it

  available to the average home at a fraction of the original cost of the hand crafted

  masterpieces. 

 

  Technical progress and urbanization resulted in more people having money for

  medallions in their own homes.   Ceiling heights were lower than that of the larger

  palaces of royalty, thus the chandeliers were hung closer to the ceiling.  This

  became a problem particularly with the proximity of the candle flame to the ceiling

  above. The whole piece plaster medallion became an excellent economical way to

  create a non-combustible fire barrier between the ceiling and the open flame. 

  It even allowed for wall paper to adorn a ceiling with less fear of fire. 

 

  The introduction of the gas lamp, although safer, still required a heat and fire barrier

  just as the candles did in earlier times.  In order to be an effective fire barrier, the

  medallion had to be 2/3rds larger than the arms of the chandelier holding the flame.

 

  As the electric age dawned, medallions became less of a functional entity and more of

  an anchor for ceiling decoration.  Now available to all, through mass production, these

  gems of ceiling decor are economical and easy to install.  Plaster requires professional

  installation, so producers have made them from a lite weight ArchPolymerTM.  This

 synthetic material has the same consistency as white pine and installs with a construction

 adhesive and looks like detailed plaster at a fraction of the cost. 

 

 Imperial's medallion collection can be made from GRG-NeoPlasterTM in order to provide

 the necessary ASTM-E84 non combustible fire rating for commercial applications. 

 One can also order the ArchPolymerTM treated with a fire retardant primer that allows

 two hours of protection.

 

 As a major element of interior design, ceiling medallions have evolved from delicate

 rococo spider lines, to the heavier acanthus leaves, to the elegant lines of the Federal

 period, to the modern waves of Art Deco.  Today they re the focal point of interest

 in a room that creates an illusion of height and are a major element setting the style

 of the entire room. 

 

 At MartinRichardsDesignTM we try to incorporate the

 various traditional element in a more modern context. 

 The medallion shown here combines the traditional egg

 and dart molding with acanthus leaves in a symmetrical effect.

 This wonderful design has three similar matching sizes. 

 Speaking about sizing a medallion we have written a great

 article on How to Size a Medallion which you might

 be interested in reading.

 

 

 

 

 

  For those that are looking for the modernism that was expressed in the

  Art Deco period we created IPMRD8012 and IPMRD8014 ovals.

  The graduated ovals are smooth and can appeal to many modern

  collections.

  

 

 

 

 

 

   Our new rectangular medallion has over 30 metal inserts

  and holes can be drilled anywhere on the surface area for

  drop lights. 

 

 

             In conclusion, the ceiling medallion is a truly brilliant design

         gem that has evolved from pure decoration, to a fire barrier

         protector to the epicenter of a room's style. 

 

 

           Martin Richards, Pres  MartinRichardsDesignTM 

 

   See our extensive collection @ imperialmedallions.com           

 

 

 

 

 

  Contact Us:  1-800-399-7585    email: sales@imperialproductions.com

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  * Measurements are approximate only, Final Product may vary from this website

   COPYRIGHT  MRDCI Martin Richards Design and Contracting Inc, Martin Richards DesignTM 

     and Imperial Productions®                                                        Feb 2018  all rights reserved

   Last Update DEC-18   payment by MC/Visa with signed merchant sales draft

 

 

 

 

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