Light damage and light control


Setting lighting levels with laptop in WAVE at Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery. Courtesy Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery.

 

Light damage is cumulative and irreversible; however, it is probably the easiest of the ten agents of deterioration to control. By knowing how sensitive an object is to light, we can control the rate of damage by limiting its exposure to light. The dilemma lies in the need to find a balance between having enough light to see while limiting the amount of light damage so that future generations will also be able to view the object.

Good lighting is a necessity for any exhibition, however, light can cause damage to collections. There are a number of solutions which can be explored when looking at the best way to control light in the exhibition space.