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Gallery Lighting Designers for China Exchange

China Exchange is an exciting venue in the heart of London's Chinatown. Our gallery lighting designers were asked to provide advice on lighting sensitive photographic images for an up coming exhibition.

This was for an exhibition of 32 original rare photographic images from the Qing Dynasty. These images showed various aspects of Peking life (now Beijing) and architecture around 120 years ago.

Following our gallery lighting designers site visit. The curator in New York then contacted us directly to discuss possible gallery lighting options.

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Gallery lighting designers for China Exchange London.
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Galllery lighting installation for successful art exhibition.
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One of the most important and challenging parts for a gallery lighting designers role is to provide; conservation lighting design that is a compromise between low light levels, whilst still allowing the visitors to be able to view the art on display. This is particularly the case in exhibitions that have very rare light sensitive photographic images or materials.

The exhibition was only for 7 days, so the cost of equipment & installation of the lighting system was also a contributing factor, as the China Exchange only had ambient lighting which was not suitable for lighting of art.

Various options where provided to the exhibition curator by one of our gallery lighting designers. Finally a clever system of almost invisible low voltage wires was installed above the visitors heads. These wires were lost amongst the busy ceiling of air handling units and ducting.

Numerous focusable LED light fittings (as those shown in the images) where adjusted to give a low light level of between 50 to 60 lux, This compromise minimised abuse to the images but enabled visitors to see the incredible detail of the photographs on display. When the exhibition was closed the photographic images where covered in blackout cloth to minimise exposure to harmful light and any loss of information.

It was further agreed that SMA would provide the curator and collector with a potential exhibition design layout. The exhbition layout had to overcome the limitations of the space and show the images at their optimum.

It was the first time working with this New York based client but quickly a good relationship was forged. Over the next couple of months they heavily relied on our design expertise. This included advice on almost all aspect of the exhibition including the design of graphics and marketing materials.

The exhibition was opened on time by Sir David Tang to the delight of the art collector, exhibition curator, scholars and the public.

The conclusion being that it is possible to produce an exhibition in the shortest of time, which is aesthetic, informative with beautiful. Whilst delivering conservation lighting design on the the smallest of budgets.

"Thank you Simon – you have been a real gift on this exhibition" - Exhibition Curator.

“That is wonderful
- I am all the more grateful for your support after your wonderful efforts to make the exhibition so successful” - Art Collector & Dealer.

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