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A complexTHERMOFORMED Curtain Wall in a Sacred Place

JVC Architects contacted surfaceLAB to help evaluate and determine if their complex concept for a solid surface curtain wall could be installed at the Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Las Vegas.

By Rick Wing

When JVC Architects in Las Vegas contacted the design team at surfaceLAB to help determine if their complex concept for a solid surface curtain wall could be thermoformed and seamlessly installed at the Holy Spirit Catholic Church located in North Las Vegas, it was a substantial project to design and fulfill.

surfaceLAB complexThermoform

surfaceLAB began by creating a 3-D printed scale model of the component panels to determine feasibility, fit and function of the panels. Once they established constructability, which employed their proprietary solid surface thermoforming process called complexTHERMOFORM, they submitted samples for review. The final material selected for this project was Porcelanosa’s Krion solid surface.

complexTHERMOFORM employs state-of-the-art 5-axis CNC modeling and machining of compound tooling and thermoformed solid surface component pieces, many times creating multiple thermoformed segments requires precise nesting and fitment. These compound curved surfaces are expertly CNC cut, then seamlessly bonded, and finally surface blended with expert craftmanship to fulfill the client’s design requirements.

Before the complexTHERMOFORMED panels were installed, a mounting system was supplied by Dave Sommer of Modfacade. The Nvelope NV3 Mounting System, typically used for exterior façade applications, was applied for this interior installation.

surfaceLAB provided over 90 30″ x 72″ complexTHERMOFORMED panels which were installed from the floor base up in a bricklayer pattern. Every vertical and horizontal seam needed to be matched by contour perfectly to complete a seamlessly bonded joint in both directions.

Once these panels were installed and all seaming was complete, surfaceLAB began the arduous two-week process of sanding and blending every seam to a matte-finished detail. This entire process was completed for both the right and left sides of the curtain wall.

The intent from the beginning was for surfaceLAB to provide a smooth, seamless, contoured surface that was monolithic by design. They created this amazing feature on time and within budget alongside the team at Bentar Construction in Las Vegas.

Meeting their goal and purpose of the installation, surfaceLAB was able to provide an aesthetically pleasing feature wall that is an extraordinary example of a very complex solid surface application. As the focal point for the church, this curtain wall provides a beautiful eye-catching aesthetic in this peaceful and inspiring environment.

For more information on this project, surfaceLAB’s complexTHERMOFORMING capabilities or other advanced technologies in solid surface, visit

(surfaceLAB and complexTHERMOFORM and their variations are trademarked.)

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