Extruded bronze is still used for doors and windows, frames, railings, elevators, lamps and hardware. Today, commercial “bronze” and architectural “bronze” contain zinc rather than tin: these materials are actually brasses but are marketed as bronze because is generally considered a more prestigious metal. One example of this is the “bronze” clad Seagram Building in New York City by Mies Van der Rohe.
About the Seagram Building (375 Park Avenue)
The extruded bronze curtain wall of the Seagram Building in New York City consists of the largest I-Beams ever extruded. The curtain wall consists of 4-1/2” by 6” extruded architectural bronze I-beam mullions, Muntz metal spandrels, and pink-gray, heat and glare resistant glass in story-high architectural bronze frames.
Additional information about the development and design of the historic Seagram Building can be found at the website 375 Park Avenue.
Also featured on 10 Buildings that Changed America, the Seagram Building has a vibrant history that actually started the modern skyscraper revolution.
Architectural bronze (C38500) only resembles real bronze with a statuary brown patina in color, is regularly rubbed with oil to prevent the bronze from forming a green patina.
We would like to thank the original authors, Margot Gayle and John Waite, who developed the book “Metals in America’s Historic Buildings”