|Architect||Ewan Christian (1814-1895)|
|Photographer||Rudi Meisel, Berlin|
Famous British faces - since 1856 this has been the subject matter of the traditional gallery in London. The change to LED lighting makes the museum very "avant-garde".
The idea of dedicating a portrait gallery to a nation's most famous faces was a new and exemplary concept back in 1856. The collection moved to its current premises at St Martin's Place, near to Trafalgar Square and in the direct vicinity of the equally famous National Gallery, in 1896. Today, the museum owns around 11,000 portraits, executed in highly different media, ranging from paintings and photographs to busts. Extended several times, the building's three storeys now offer space both for the permanent collection and for a demanding programme of special exhibitions.
The museum technicians recognised early on that ERCO's LED technology enabled huge savings in energy and maintenance without compromising the lighting quality. Thanks to the already existing lighting systems with ERCO track and singlets, it was an easy matter to experiment with the conversion to LED spotlights in individual areas. Savings of 68% in energy costs encouraged the museum management to successively re-equip further rooms, once the curators and conservationists had also given the green light following extensive testing.
The lighting tools used are 14W Optec LED spotlights fitted with Spherolit lenses with different characteristics. The warm white LED light is free of IR and UV components, therefore ensuring optimum exhibit conservation.
St Martin's Place, London, WC2H 0HE
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