Louis Sullivan Headboard

Louis Sullivan Headboard

Mild Steel Frame and cast Aluminum Balustrades.

This Headboard has a very interesting "back story" (....don't ALL of my projects!!)

I was approached by someone who had bought a section of Railing from THE Carson Pirie Scott's store at State and Madison, in Chicago.
I was unsure why a historic element of a Historic Building would be cut up and sold off – but I went to look. In their storage room was a 10 ft chunk of Railing with 2 beautiful Balustrades – clearly Sullivan-esqe – but covered with layers of Brown Paint.

After some Design Proposals – we settled on a Design that would require"one more" balustrade to fill in, or visually balance the design.
So – using a sculptor who runs a top notch Foundry in his shop – I was able to reproduce one of the balustrades thru the Sand Casting method in Aluminum.

Aluminum? ...... why Aluminum? Because the other 2 balustrades were also Aluminum...but wait-said the "Urban Archaeologist" ... didn't Sullivan do his Metal Casting in IRON, not aluminum? .... Correcto-Mundo-Smarty! Apparently – sometime in Carson's past – they added the staircase/Railing in a remodeling effort- causing the new Railing to made with another material.

So – although these beautiful Architectural elements came out of a HISTORIC Louis Sullivan building – they are not the "original" ones from the late 1800's.

Needless to say – the client is thrilled with her new Headboard – and has reportedly been "sleeping with The Angels"....

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