I began building these lamps as standalone art objects after designing thirteen such lighting fixtures for the production Machinal in 2008. Each fixture is one-of-a-kind and built by me in my art studio in North Adams, Massachusetts. I bought a large batch of copper tubing from a Vermont homeowner whose renovation plans tanked when the economy did; I find the faucet buttons and handles in antique stores or on Ebay; and I find the lumber in scene shop dumpsters, or in some cases, it comes to me as contributions from other artists’ scrap piles.
Each lighting fixture has either a simple switch or a dimmer embedded in the base, usually activated by turning a cross handle. Lamps that do not have a cross handle have a touch-sensitive dimmer: Touch the copper in the right place (perhaps near a “hot” button) and the lamp cycles through four levels of brightness.