US National Archives

A study and fine-art mural was created and installed by the fine artists and artisans of Canning, who also executed the simulated coffered ceiling detail in the half dome of the newly constructed visitor orientation plaza at the US National Archives building.

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Location: Washington, DC
Built: 1933
Original Architect: John Russell Pope
Style: Classical Revival


Canning was engaged by Hartman Cox Architects to assist with the design of a new mural proposed for a shallow dome in the new visitor orientation plaza, located a level beneath the Constitution exhibit hall.

Executing the mural directly on the curved dome would cause visual distortion. We proposed inserting a new curved wall, providing enough vertical space for a trompe l’oeil depiction of the upper portions of the Constitution display entablature; the coffered ceiling would be depicted on the dome.