Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts
This project involved the reproduction of fourteen wall brackets originally manufactured by the Pittsburgh Valve and Fittings Company around 1920 (see original catalog sheet below). Unfortunately, all we had to work with was one incomplete original cast iron unit. The original manufacturer had made no provision for drainage of water through the fixture. The fixtures filled with water and froze repeatedly, causing the tails to crack and fall off.
To start we stripped the several coats of paint and the galvanizing underneath, to reveal as much detail as possible. The hand-carved portions were cast in resin to duplicate the casting pattern and the balance of the pattern, including the incomplete tail were hand built or carved. Changes were made to the interior of the fitter casting to accommodate a ballast and a quartz re-strike unit. A generous drain hole was added to the back of the tail, facing the wall and other drain holes were added in the fitter region.
The decision was made to cast in aluminum. In order to make the castings last as long as possible, we opted to increase wall thickness and to anodize the castings prior to painting. We then applied an epoxy primer and a urethane top-coat in the dark gray color selected by the architect. The fixtures use a 70 watt metal halide lamp, suitable for use in open fixtures and a 16" white opal glass globe. Overall fixture height is 35" with a 21" projection.
Thank you to Dagit-Saylor Architects for allowing Klemm to build their fixtures.