UTICA, N.Y.–Big and green, that’s what a local theater asked for when it commissioned Meyda Tiffany to make a new chandelier for its domed grand foyer.
Both requests were honored. Meyda spent nearly a year designing, engineering and constructing a 35-foot-wide, 17-foot-tall chandelier that weighs 7,000 pounds and is powered by 328 light-emitting diodes. The enormous fixture, believed to be the largest LED chandelier in the world, was installed earlier this month at the Stanley Center for the Arts here.
As for the green theme, the fixture’s LEDs, made by Philips Luxeon, are the same LEDs used for the New Year’s Eve ball-drop in Times Square and use 1,120 total watts, which would be the equivalent of energy used for a one-drip coffeemaker, Meyda said. If incandescent bulbs had been installed, it would have used 7,435 watts, enough to power 17 refrigerators, according to Meyda. LEDs can last 15 years or more.
The fixture was custom-crafted of steel, blown glass and acrylic, and assembled in several sections of tubular steel trusses, plus a dozen sections of other steel trusses, framework and decorative embellishments. Finished in antique gold and bronze, it was designed to complement the theater’s Mexican baroque Moorish theme.
A constant-tension device lowers the chandelier from the ceiling so it can be cleaned and maintained easily. Hidden inside the chandelier is a catwalk that enables maintenance personnel to walk around the fixture. — Nancy Meyer