Grand Hall Chandelier

The magnificent, custom-made crystal chandelier was commissioned by the Arkansas Governor’s Mansion Commission in the spring of 2008 to add a finishing touch of elegance to the Grand Hall.  As a work of art, the large-scale, mid-19th-century design of the chandelier incorporates candles of light and elements of traditional State symbolism on a hand-wrought steel frame with gold- and silver-leaf patina.  It was designed by noted Little Rock interior designer Kaki Hockersmith and artistically fabricated by Thomas Grant Chandeliers of Dallas, Texas.

 

The 6.5-foot by 8.8-foot piece has a top corona of scrolling leaves and sprays, with above five large scrolling ribs to form an open “cage”-style chandelier.  The ribs begin with a large “C” scroll with leaves at the top, then scroll downward to form the large central section, joined at the bottom with a basket banding.  The banding contains 25 stars, symbolizing Arkansas’s admittance to the Union as the 25th state, as well as the 25 stars on our State flag.  A further downward scrolling of five ribs completes the structure.  These final ribs are joined with crystal beadwork lighted from behind.  Loblolly pine cones, cast in metal and finished in a realistic brown patina, encircle and crown the top of the frame.

 

A focal point for the chandelier is created in the open center “cage.”  Illuminated from below, a crystal vase containing branches of beaded apple blossoms and a honey bee, provides more symbolism of the State flower and insect.  The entire chandelier is ornamented with diamond-shaped, lead crystal prisms and quartz prisms, representing the fact that Arkansas is the only diamond-producing state in North America.  Two specimens of natural-cut Arkansas crystals are suspended from the chandelier.  A large, hand-picked, and polished, clear quartz crystal prism is proudly suspended below.  There is also a five-point, “golden-healer,” honey-quartz crystal prism hanging from the center top section. 

 

Funding for the chandelier was provided by a grant from the Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Commission (ANCRC) and through private donations.