When I acquired many of Hart's belongings, it quickly
became apparent that he had a totally different approach to making shades.
Whereas common practice includes the use of a formal design pattern for the entire shade, templates for the individual pattern pieces and final assembly on a form, Hart started by seeking out common objects that ranged from salad bowls, gasoline cans, in fact anything that would serve as a suitable foundation for a shade. The photo below shows a cheap metal kitchen shade that can be found in many DIY or furnishing stores. This particular 16" diameter 'form' has likely been used for many of Anthony's lamps, it is a common profile, not out of line with the more traditional configurations used by other makers. See typical completed shades (right), made from this form.
It appears that Hart seldom, if ever used a formal pattern and templates to make his shades. Instead, he would cover the mold with surgical tape, a ready supply was often on hand as his wife Christine, was under home medical care for a number of years.
Once the shade was covered in tape, he would draw portions of the design onto it, cut the glass, foil and solder it, then move on to the next section.
The Wisteria shade, (at left), and barely started, illustrates this. He used copper tubing for his branches and twig work.
This particular shade was his last, never finished. He died a short while after starting it.
TOOLS and FEATURES
Hart apparently never used a light table.
When cutting glass to the pattern he drew on the forms, he shaped & grozed the pieces directly without a template. He used a simple pair of pliers, no special tools.
He used a simple 75W soldering iron.
Many of Hart's shades carried a brass numbered tag. So far, it appears there was no particular method to the shade numbers he assigned, although he did record as least some of them during the late 1980s. Numbers were applied to the brass tags using standard punches. Two of the three punch sets he used are featured at the right.
Many of his shades features a butterfly, almost
a trademark of his shades. It is not clear when he started this practice,
probably later in life.
Many of his shades adopted the 'puffy' characteristic that Pairpoint popularized in the early 1900s. Whereas Pairpoint's 'puffies' were incorporated into their molded glass shades, and subsequently hand painted, Hart borrowed this idea and made 'puffies' using regular foiled stained glass pieces.
He achieved this by fabricating a simple puffy template (right) from cardboard and surgical tape. The template was placed on the area of the form, then he glazed over it. Once that section of the shade was complete, the form was moved to the next area.
|An 18" wooden salad bowl served as a form for Hart's Clematis shade. Note the layers of tape on which he drew the pattern.|
|An 8" diameter metal form. So far, only one shade built on this form has been seen.|
|A 13" diameter metal form.|
|The 14" form Hart used for his Begonia shades.|
|Left, a 12" diameter form. Two shades made on this form have been identified so far.|
Here is an example of leaves on a Begonia shade, the pattern doesn't exactly match this particular shade. As the patterns were often flimsy, they no doubt had a short lifespan and had to be redrawn.
There are several sketches of his 'trademark' flowers (above and right), some of these are drawn inside books and on the back. It is thought that Hart did these particular sketches when tutoring a young man who spent time with him in later years.