Building 51 | Building 51 | c. 1930’s nortown theater ceiling mount auditorium atmospheric blinking “star” light with inverted conical shade – major electric equipment co., chicago, il.
9167
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c. 1930’s nortown theater ceiling mount auditorium atmospheric blinking “star” light with inverted conical shade – major electric equipment co., chicago, il.

51-16513-13

Category

Chicago Theatres

About This Item

original and intact vintage american industrial auditorium atmospheric blinking “star” ceiling light salvaged from the non-extant nortown theater, demolished in 2007. one of the distinctive features contributing to the characterization of the “atmospheric” style movie palace were the “star” lights mounted high above in the ceiling. these fixtures served the purpose of emulating the presence of a starry night, and were configured to resemble the constellations. the nortown theater consulted with a university of chicago astronomy professor to assist in the accurate portrayal of the star arrangement. in order to access these fixtures one had to crawl above the projector room beneath the roof where interconnected metal platforms run in all directions. the black enameled steel fixture consists of an inverted conical shade woth a single perforation that would be mounted flush (and thereby exposed) with the auditorium ceiling. a conduit box is affixed to the top. the “blinker” sockets were designed to create the effect of “twinkling” stars. the assembly was fabricated by the major electric equipment company, chicago, il.