Utah State Capitol Restoration, Salt Lake City, UT
Architectural Lighting 2010 Outstanding Achievement Award. Documented, removed, shipped, restored, replicated and reinstalled over 1,400 early 20th century lighting fixtures, symbolic of the State of Utah.
For the renovation of this pre-1926 building on the National Register of Historic Places, the Architect of the State of Utah sought to create a team who would undertake the work with a commitment to following the Standards and Guidelines for the Treatment of Historic Properties on a timely and budget sensitive basis. Rambusch was selected to participate as the historic lighting team member in an innovative Design Assist process. After extensive archival research and formal conservation study to properly treat surfaces, Rambusch began.
Rambusch innovatively “harvested” design elements (finials, shields, trims, etc.) for new luminaires from existing heirloom fixtures and skillfully blended into new, complementary designs. Molds were taken of the original elements to maximize the detail of ornamentation. New parts were cast in brass using modern techniques, and then finished to match the restored originals. By not needing to make new molds, this significantly reduced their cost and assured the integrity and continuity throughout the interior. To facilitate this and further organize the design, luminaires were tiered into five groups of decreasing cost and complexity. All modifications and confirmations were performed before final installations. Room by room, lighting fixtures were adjusted individually for the varying ceiling heights, irregular mounting conditions and other distinguishing features of the renovated building as it neared completion. Fixture inventories, field condition surveys, methods of analysis, finishing techniques and in many cases, full-size drawings of each lighting fixture were archived for the use of future generations.