As museums around the world look to protect some of the most famous paintings from artists like Vincent van Gogh, few realize the harm that light can have on the darkening of bright colors in these iconic paintings. The yellow pigment used specifically by van Gogh has darkened so noticeably over time that other artists have started using other pigments entirely.
Museums Switching to LED Lighting
As companies look to not only save money, but also better protect their paintings, they’re looking to LED lighting in droves.
Scientists have identified the colors of light that are most damaging to paintings, which are typically blue and UV light. In the past, art museums would put UV filters over their incandescent bulbs, but LEDs make it much simpler by not emitting UV light at all.
LED Innovations Leading to Less Damage to Paintings
However, LED light is still light and, therefore, can damage paintings. Scientists have therefore been working hard to find ways to minimize this damage. One way is through the creation of LED lights that offer users the ability to change the direction of the light. This allows art museums to better direct light sources to minimize the amount of light that is directly hitting precious paintings. Another way museums are protecting paintings is by minimizing the amount of overhead light. Art lovers visit museums for the art, and by dimming the overall gallery, it doesn’t detract from a typical day at the museum.
LED Tunabilty Offers Additional Creativity
One of the benefits of LED lighting is the ability to play around with different varieties of lighting in a museum. Artists can use different types of LED lighting to make objects look completely different, which opens up the possibilities for the lighting itself to be a part of art exhibits around the world.
LED Testing Key to Protecting Paintings
LED testing is especially important when lights will be used to illuminate valuable paintings. At Gooch & Housego, we offer a variety of testing equipment, such as the OL 770-LED that allow lighting manufacturers to ensure their products will meet all necessary industry standards.