The National Museum of Fine Arts in Riga

Museum lighting: a finely-balanced relationship between light and art Riga / Latvia

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The National Museum of Fine Arts in Riga (Latvijas Nacionalais Mākslas Muzejs) was reopened to the public in the spring of 2016 after a period of closure for renovation. A renewal carefully designed to emphasise the high artistic value of the works on exhibition as well as the architecture of the host building. 


The choice of lighting solutions was based on two assumptions: first, the aim was to emphasise the majestic façade of the building, designed in classical and baroque style by the German architect Wilhelm Neumann. On the other hand, the intention was to highlight the great artistic merit of the various works exhibited (paintings of various sizes, sculptures and small objects housed in glass cases and niches, often on display in rooms with very high ceilings). The bright lines of the Xenia bar were used to illuminate the main façade. In this way lighting spills over as a soft mantle of light, extending upwards and downwards. In contrast, 1300 projectors were chosen to illuminate the collections and exhibition areas, roughly 90% of these using DALI technology.


The choice for interior museum lighting fell on the i-Lèd collection: Sunrise and Vektor. The Sunrise projector, using high colour LED light source rendering, gives shape to accents of light which combine in a play on forms and sizes, highlighting certain aspects of works of art and interior building architecture. Vektor projector technology, on the same track, offers instead the chance of precisely shaping painting contours. LED technology, combined with shaping, not only does not damage picture pigments, but pinpoints visual focus on the canvas, creating a pleasant contrast effect with the supporting walls.

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    The National Museum of Fine Arts in Riga (Latvijas Nacionalais Mākslas Muzejs) was reopened to the public in the spring of 2016 after a period of closure for renovation. A renewal carefully designed to emphasise the high artistic value of the works on exhibition as well as the architecture of the host building.  The choice of lighting solutions was based on two assumptions: first, the aim was to emphasise the majestic façade of the building, designed in classical and baroque style...

    Project details
    • Status Completed works
    • Type Multi-purpose Cultural Centres / Museums / Lighting Design / Art Galleries / Recovery/Restoration of Historic Buildings / Restoration of Works of Art / Restoration of façades
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