ARTfx Forges Vintage-Style Sign for Times Square Bar

Foundry sign recreates throwback incandescent look
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If sign-industry professionals travel to NYC without getting excited about the sheer diversity and creativity of its ever-present environmental graphics, they should seriously reconsider their line of work. Exterior, electronic-display facades around Times Square garner many headlines for their constant reinvention – “The Crossroads of America” doesn’t receive regular coverage in ST’s pages for no reason – but invigorating signage can be found almost everywhere in the Naked City.
Thanks to ARTfx (Bloomfield, CT), the Foundry Kitchen & Bar at the Westin’s Times Square hotel provides further evidence of the collective fascination with retro signage. Patricia Spencer, a NYC-based designer, devised the sign, which incorporates lights specified by iCrave, the project’s architect. She created a full-color rendering, and shop drawings were subsequently developed in CorelDRAW. ARTfx converted shapes using CorelDRAW, and prepped files for production using Omega software.
The shop fabricated the aluminum components on its Miller Electric MIG-welding system and Gerber AR600 and Sabre 408 CNC routers. Fabricators created a custom patina faux-finish using Akzo Nobel Grip-Gard acrylic-polyurethane coatings to decorate the channel-letter returns and backs. The stencil-cut, halo-lit cabinets comprise aluminum with an acrylic layer set back an inch behind the face. Archipelago’s Nostalgic Series LED bulbs replicate traditional incandescent bulbs within the letters, and Bitro 3000 1.2W LED modules illuminate the small cabinet.