Fabric Architecture at the Auto Show:ESPN and ER2


This year’s Chicago Auto Show brought more than just new cars. Due to ESPN’s sponsorship from Mazda, ESPN was able to occupy space in their booth, broadcasting live and offering photo opportunities to attendees. ESPN wanted to set themselves apart from Mazda in their portion of the exhibit, and as long time customers of ER2, they reached out to us to get the job done right.

Working with ESPN to fill their 15’x25’ area, we provided conceptual 3D renderings and produced an 8’x20’ fabric backwall with an off-set 4’x8’ backwall, merging both walls together by adding depth with a seamless graphic image. We also created a large 25’x15’x2’ four-sided overhead frame with graphic pillowcase fabric panels and hand held signs featuring the faces of ESPN Radio in Chicago, Carmen DeFalco, John Jurkovic, Marc Silverman, and Tom Waddle for comical photo ops.


The backwall was produced on our 132″ d.gen Grande G5 Textile Printer. Mark Schellerer, VP of Operations for ER2, discusses, “As the largest dye sublimation platform in the market, this printer truly allows us to think bigger and with the highest resolution possible.” We finished the backwall in a pillowcase fashion, which has a zipper on top to keep from eye’s view. The overhead was finished with the same pillowcase zipper style, providing a seamless finish. To construct the look, 1.5” and 2” round aluminum tubing was used to secure the large hanging fabric structure. From the time the order came in to the time it shipped, the whole project was completed in only eight business days.

Linda Tellez, Account Executive for ER2, was excited about the design. “This was such a fun project for us not only because it was exhibiting at the Auto Show, but also because it allowed ER2 to showcase our capabilities and offerings in relation to the ‘Fabric Architecture’ world. For this particular project, we had to combine stock black fabric with printed black on the hanging panels. Within such a close proximity, this is difficult to pull off without noticeable color disparities. With our printer, we realized a rich, dense, and BOLD look. You weren’t able to tell one was printed and the other was not. I feel we did a great, creative job providing them a space within a space.”