Local artist celebrates Wonder Tower
Mickael Broth has painted a variety of projects over his more than 20-year career, but the call to paint hard hats was a first.
Last summer he was commissioned to paint 260 hard hats celebrating the construction of the Wonder Tower at Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU.
The painted hard hats feature unique designs and will be used by Children's Hospital Foundation at a variety of events, media activities and construction site tours over the next two years.
“It was a really unique project and process,” said Mickael, who developed a multi-step technique that included sanding and priming each hat to ensure the colorful designs would adhere to the hat’s plastic.
Working from his Richmond studio, Mickael, known as The Night Owl to his Instagram followers, completed 10-16 hats at a time, starting with a base color and then adding unique details and designs. With inspiration from the abstract work of many of his sculptures, Mickael followed an “organic process for design and color schemes by letting the colors dictate what came next.” He added, “the bright colors and hectic patterns bring happiness and joy.”
Michael was honored to be part of the project for personal reasons too. He has friends whose children have been treated for cancer at CHoR, and four years ago his now 5-year-old son received care there following an accident.
“I was honored to be involved in a project like this,” Mickael said. “The hospital is a force for good in the world, and I can’t think of a better way to use my talents.”
Keep up with the progress of the new children’s tower at builtforkids.org.