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Archive for July, 2009

Meet Me Under the Clock

July 30th, 2009 No comments

In 1920s New York, when your sweetheart said, “Meet me under the clock”, you knew to head over to the Astor Hotel, a favored gathering place for the F. Scott Fitzgerald crowd and other Jazz Age glitterati. If said rendezvous was taking place in the 1930s, the two of you might duck into the Biltmore to sip martinis, lift a toast to the repeal of prohibition, and hobnob with the fortunate few not laid low by the Great Depression. Clocks have always made great landmarks.Clock in Grand Central Terminal

These days, “under the clock” is more likely to refer to the big brass one in New York’s Grand Central Terminal, where it commands the central spot on the vaulted main concourse, perched above the marble and brass information booth. Perhaps the most recognizable icon in the Beaux Arts terminal, it has four faces, each made from opal, and has been valued by both Sotheby’s and Christie’s at between $10 and $20 million.

Unveiled in 1913 when the terminal opened, the brass beauty has been a character in countless Hollywood films. It was captured at interesting angles for the 1942 B-movie, Grand Central Murder, by the cinematographer George Folsey, who later went on to shoot Meet Me in St. Louis and Ziegfeld Follies.

Grand Central Murder movie posterIt provided the big city backdrop as Bing Crosby and a cast of hundreds sang “Going to Hollywood” in That’s Entertainment, and Cary Grant made his heart-thumping getaway from a band of spies in Alfred Hitchcock’s North By NorthWest. Since then, it has appeared in The Cotton Club, The French Connection, Midnight Run, The Godfather, The Fisher King, Superman, and Men in Black, among many others.

Contrary to popular belief, the seminal scene between Judy Garland and Robert Walker in Vincente Minnelli’s much loved 1945 film, The Clock, actually takes place on an MGM Studios sound stage built to look like New York’s Pennsylvania Station, a mile across town.

Thanks to the beauty and durability of brass, a classic copper alloy – and to a more vigilant and informed New York citizenry, which in the 1990s saved Grand Central Terminal from the sad fate of the original Penn Station – the clock will inspire proud New Yorkers, bustling commuters, and starry-eyed lovers for many years to come.

Categories: Architecture Tags: , , ,

HVAC Systems Need a Breath of Fresh Air

July 30th, 2009 No comments

T-shirts and sandals, long country weekends, walks on the beach – we wait all year for the lazy, hazy days of summer. We aren’t the only ones. Microbes, including many that can make us sick, grow and multiply more readily in a warm, moist environment.

HVAC vent atop buildingFor these microscopic critters, nothing could be more inviting than the heating and air conditioning (HVAC) units found in many buildings. Without careful maintenance, an HVAC system can become a breeding ground for harmful, odor-causing bacteria, mildew, and mold. These unsavory colonies are not only bad for our health, they eventually compromise the efficiency of the machinery they inhabit, costing us money.

Thanks to the antimicrobial properties of copper, HVAC systems may one day be the last place a microbe will want to live. Read our news release on how New Research Is a Breath of Fresh Air for Heating and Air Conditioning Units and follow the research on antimicrobial copper http://copperairquality.org/index.html, which is being underwritten by the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command.

Rio Tinto a Winner at the Stevie Awards™

July 30th, 2009 No comments

CDA member, Rio Tinto, one of the world’s largest mining companies, and Vérité, a digital communications agency, received two 2009 American Business Awards last week.

fromoretomore.pshpd.200wThey won the Stevie Award for Best Animated Film in the public relations category for their film “From Ore to More”, which tells the story of the lifecycle of copper at Rio Tinto’s Kennecott Utah Copper. The film is viewed in schools, on the Web, and by tour groups.

They also accepted a Stevie Finalist Award for Best Integrated Marketing Campaign in the metals and mining category for their “We’re part of something bigger”campaign. The campaign consists of TV and radio spots, a Web site, prints ads, and various ribbon and video banners for use at Rio Tinto Stadium.

Categories: Member News, Mining Tags: , , ,

Copper Leaf Studios

July 24th, 2009 5 comments

One of the highlights of copper is the intrinsic beauty of the material itself. It comes out of the ground already pleasing to the eye. In the hands of an artist, it achieves form and expression. greatlakes.250wOver time, or with the help of modern aging methods, it can acquire a variety of patinas. Or it can be treated to remain suspended in time. No wonder artists find it such a versatile and rewarding medium.

When I saw Christen Zielski’s copper maps and copper leaf motifs, I had to know how the artist, the material, and the ideas had found each other. Apropos of the age in which we live, I discovered her not in a gallery but on Twitter. We dashed a few micro messages back and forth and then finally connected beyond the 140-character Twittersphere.

Christen talked with me from her Cleveland, Ohio, atelier, Copper Leaf Studios.

Coppertalk: Chris, why maps – and why copper?

Christen Zielski: I started working in copper after researching non-toxic printmaking techniques for a high school course I was slated to teach. Schedules shifted and I didn’t end up with the class, but I fell in love with the process and started working in metal. Prior to that I had been a textile & collage artist for about 15 years. Metal was a pretty natural transition for me, as my previous work focused on rich color, texture, and layering – this was just an extension of the same ideas. Read more…

Copper in the Arts – July ’09B

July 24th, 2009 No comments

This month in…

Copper in the Arts
Monthly Online Newsletter of the Copper Development Association

It must be gratifying to be able to breathe new life into some of America’s most beloved edifices; to know that because of you, the Statue of Liberty, the Plaza Hotel, Carnegie Hall, and many other historic structures will be around for a very long time.

Restored copper facadeSchtiller & Plevy, an historic restoration and architectural sheet metal shop in Newark, New Jersey, has worked on these famous landmarks, and is one of only a few accredited Historic Restoration Contractors in the country. Larry Plevy, the company’s president and a man who can gauge the thickness of a sheet of copper by touch, describes his work in industrial terms, but what one sees is the hand of an artist.

The Schtiller & Plevy story begins with Larry Plevy’s great, great grandfather, who installed the “skins” of the onion dome churches in Czarist Russia, and continues down to the recent $2 million restoration of the American Museum of Natural History.

Schtiller & Plevy: A Commitment to Restoring History tells the fascinating story.

Also in the current edition:
●    Gregory Nangle: Outcast Studios
●    The Movement of Bronze: Andrew DeVries
●    Capturing the Wild West through Bronze
●    A listing of upcoming events

Architects’ Corner

July 14th, 2009 No comments

Copper FAQs, Resources, and Upcoming Events

“…Then, there’s copper, which is the only pipe I use. It costs money. It costs money because it saves money.” – Cosmo Castorini, Moonstruck

If you’re not already working on a project that includes copper, chances are you soon will be. Copper is back in a big way and for good reasoncopperroofbldg.225w: it’s beautiful, durable, 100% recyclable – and it saves money.

The Copper Development Association has an informative page, Architectural Copper Products FAQs, to get you started. Learn about copper finishes, corrosion and stain prevention, environmental impact, and proven design techniques for working with copper and its alloys.

Our industry experts can help in a variety of ways, from in-house seminars to project design assistance, document and specifications review, and contractor recommendation. You can download our free design handbook, check on upcoming industry events, and learn about our educational and support programs. (more)