PROJECT: Park Avenue Armory Veterans Room, New York, NY
Evolution of a Lighting Fixture
One of the most rewarding aspects of a lighting restorer’s experience is to be part of the evolution of a lighting fixture. Lighting fixtures can tell their own story as well as offer a glimpse into the history of technology itself. This is the case at the Veterans Room at the Park Avenue Armory.
The magnificent room, designed by Louis C. Tiffany, Associated Artists, is the most elaborate and ornate room at the Armory. Of special note are two 30′ wrought iron fixtures that span the room and were manufactured by Mitchell, Vance & Co. Finished in 1880, the fixtures just preceded the advent of electricity in that part of town and were each lit by (24) gas jets. Even with so many flames, the room must have been very atmospheric with low level lighting. The building was electrified in 1897, and the fixtures were fitted with incandescent bulbs.
As the next iteration, the Architects Herzog & de Meuron, in conjunction with Fisher Marantz Stone – Architectural Lighting Consultants, redesigned the lighting source once again. This time concave lenses are lit by single LED pucks. The light follows the curve of the lens and emulates the flames that originally lit the room.
Aurora’s role was to carry out the design intent and seamlessly integrate the new lighting solution into the historic fixtures. Our scope also involved the fabrication of numerous luminaires to allow for infinite lighting options and settings. This work included 82 linear feet of wall wash lighting.
From recreating the warm atmospheric glow of the gas lighting to state-of-the-art theatrical effects, the room is equipped to showcase the diverse art experiences for which the Armory has become known.
The execution of the Design Team’s vision was extremely intricate and complex. Aurora Lampworks is honored to be a veteran restorer of the Park Avenue Armory Veterans Room.