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Thoughts on the use of LED in gallery lighting
In 2013, the light-emitting diode (LED) technology sector began in a state of shock with the publication of a science paper that accused light-emitting diodes of changing the color of pigment in Van Gogh's sunflower work. To our knowledge, the pigment testing was performed using an internal light-emitting diode (LED) light sources that should never be used in light artwork.
Trustees must be clear that there are a number of considerations to be considered in any type of tungsten lighting installations, especially when using LEDs. Photodamage to all dyestuffs, ink and delicate material is produced if they are not kept in a zero state.
They are kept away from any kind of lighting fixture for the remainder of the year. It' s a constant struggle that art dealers and museum are obligated to make works of art accessible to the general public knowing that the art itself is gradually degrading. Deterioration is reduced by careful control of the amount and intensity of sunlight and the shutter speed:
- the amount of sunlight to which the work of art is subjected, in lux/hour/year. - the color of daylight as determined by the spectral power dispersion of the lamp. Here the actual damages are done. Substances are influenced by certain parts of the visual lighting range, whereby BLUE is the biggest doer.
We have to consider the technological power of a lighting device in this environment, and there are four suitable lighting resources for galleries and museums: - Wolfram halide bulbs - seen by many as the embodiment of backlighting, but not really good in its ultraviolet component and, of course, its low power efficiency.
- Luminescent lighting - this energy-efficient resource can provide subtle visual effects when used with imagination, but its natural magnitude counteracts them and again the sunlight has an intolerable amount of ultraviolet radiation that must be removed. You can see that there is no such thing as a flawless lighting fixture when it comes to preservation.
It is possible that too much has been done about LEDs and their function as "saviours of lighting". What LEDs have in Common with the lighting fixtures in front of them is that their respective technological properties were the same. Wolfram incandescent bulbs all worked equally; wolfram halide bulbs had their own little defects; even the phosphor bulb, which was the first "mixed" type of lighting fixture to offer constancy in its rows.
Like mentioned above, it was thought that the harm to the Van Gogh pigment was due to an unsuitable type of lamp - one that provided far too much BLAUES in its spectral power scatter. None serious lighting manufacturers or designers would consider such a resource for this type of use.
To be clear: LED's for illuminating works of art and where photosensitivity is important must have a monitored short-wave display (the BLAUE end of the spectrum). This means that we need to think in relation to finely controlling our generation of whites, with color temperature of no more than 4000K and preferentially at the warm end of the range (2700K - 3000K).
Color rendition index should be above Ra.90. Make sure that the diode modules are guaranteed for years to come, usually with color constancy tolerance. The trustee should be looking for a trusted firm with a proven track-record in this field. Normally, LEDs are the product of an association between the producer of the lamp and the producer of the lamp.
These collaborations ensure that the best lighting systems available are launched on the marked. Xicato's Contrac Lighting is an important lighting partner. Combining Downlight and spotlight, equipped with Xicato'Artist' LEDs, has created a series of luminaires that is unparalleled in the lighting of works of art for art collections and museuses.