Saturday, November 19, 2011

Back to Church

Last night was my second visit to the Indiana Landmarks Center.
I went to hear a presentation by the architect and engineer responsible 
for the restoration of Victory, the statue atop the Indianapolis
Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument. I was surprised to find that the
talk was also an AIA continuing education program.

I took a seat below the rotunda just so I could take the picture above.
The top picture was taken during the day and shows the ceiling's white
paint with gold trim. When it was restored, lighting was installed
to allow for changes according to the kind of event or 
wishes of the client. Last night, it was pink and gold although
I'd also seen blue and green. The painted decoration is a neutral scheme
which seems to adapt well to whichever lighting is selected.

This is the main entrance to the ILC's Cook Grand Theater, 
made up of three doors, the one shown being the largest.

Painstaking attention was paid to the entire building, 
with a lot of effort going into the restoration of the 
pipe organ, built in 1892 by Thomas Prentiss Sanborn.

The main sanctuary of the former Central Avenue Methodist Church
has been rechristened as the Cook Grand Theater and is available
for meetings, concerts and weddings. (Anybody up for a pink and gold
wedding with a beautiful pipe organ to provide the music?)

Sadly, not many pictures I took last night of the speakers 
were any good, but here is Tory Emery, the project
engineer in charge of Victory's restoration. She is employed by
Arsee Engineers, Incorporated of Fishers Indiana, which has 
long experience in the preservation of historic buildings.

Anybody got a statue they want shifted for repairs?


dive said...

Pure class, Speedway. In an age of recession it is wonderful to see such care taken with a civic restoration; the result of the work on what is now the Cook Grand (very grand) Theatre is a truly beautiful building that enhances the entire city.
The city authorities really should link to articles on your blog as you do sterling work in showing the world that your city is not simply a motor racing circuit and some urban sprawl but a beautiful space in which to live.
Yay you!

So good to see the pigeon hat (I know, it's actually a pigeon-deterring eagle hat, but from the ground …) on proud display in the last photo. Hoorah for Victory!
And who could not love a company of engineers calling themselves Arsee? You Colonials might use "ass" but English speakers in the rest of the world can giggle at the name.

Another great post!

Speedway said...

I think another aspect of this project that's cool is that, except for the polishing and restoration of the statute itself, all the work was done by local firms. The work on the statue was done by a man out of Detroit.

And as for the church, most of the work was done by firms from within Indiana, including the rebuilding of the organ and the restoration of the stained glass.

Anonymous said...

You may think of it as a pigeon-deterring Eagle hat, but the resident peregrine falcons (who have their scrape atop a bank building across the street to the west) love to hang out up there and they are the best pigeon deterrant ever.

Speedway said...

Well, hello, f1...1e (AKA Alison) I was wondering how Victory had remained so dung free but it never occurred to me that the falcons were hunting from there. Thanks!