Project Description

Rendering Simon Fieldhouse

Old photograph 1895 Byron & Co.

7th Ave dome fixtures before and after

7th Ave fixture before restoration

After restoration

Fixture disassembly

Molds and castings

Castings before patination

Castings after patination

Castings before patination

Castings of finials

Casting after patination

UL field wet test

Evolution of Carnegie Hall

PROJECT: Carnegie Hall, New York, NY

Restoration and Replication of Historic Fixtures

The old joke goes, “How do you get to Carnegie Hall? Practice, practice, practice.”

Of course it’s really not a joke—not for performers and not for Aurora Lampworks.

After decades in the business of the restoration of lighting fixtures, we were ready for Carnegie

Phase I: Our task was the restoration of the ten exterior lighting fixtures on the 57th Street and Seventh Avenue sides of the iconic and landmark concert hall. The historic fixtures were filthy—covered in a greasy, thick layer of soot from the constant exposure to exhaust. They were actually furry, requiring numerous baths with conservation­ grade cleaners to remove the years of grime.

Phase II: We were contracted to fabricate exact replicas of the two enormous lighting fixtures on 57th Street. Old photographs showed there were originally four lighting fixtures, each weighing approximately 250­ pounds; but, two had been removed during a 1960s renovation. Our task was to take molds from one of the original fixtures and use those to cast new parts. The mold making, casting, assembly, and finishing was all done in the five boroughs of New York City. We finished the restoration project in three months and the replication portion in eight months—starting in August, 2014 and finishing the fixtures in April, 2015.

With every project that we have painstakingly undertaken, there is a great sense of accomplishment. With a project like this one, it’s particularly rewarding to know that thousands will pass by the iconic building with its lights glowing and that, flanked by those lights, a myriad of artists and audiences will pass through its doors.

It’s also gratifying to be involved in another project that received a Lumen Award by the Illuminating Engineering Society New York City Section (IESNYC).


History of the Hall
People and History