Arts October 2, 2013

Bright Lights

Art Lighting Tips From Local Galleries

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Why doesn’t my painting look as amazing at home as it did in the gallery where I purchased it? This question resounds throughout local galleries and living rooms from frustrated collectors. Whether purchasing a Picasso or a poster, lighting can either detract or enhance your investment—and it’s easy to overlook.  So here are a half-dozen helpful tips from Ketchum gallery owners on lighting your artwork.
1. “The most effective time to consider lighting is when you are building your home. Consult a lighting engineer who is an expert on not only path lighting, but considers beam spread, hot spots, tract flexibility, ceiling heights and bulb intensity," advises GAIL SEVERN of the GAIL SEVERN GALLERY.
2. “When considering lighting for your home, don’t get too hung up on the designer fixtures. Concentrate on having your artwork lit the right way and let the artwork stand out,“ suggests FREDERIC BOLOIX of FREDERIC BOLOIX FINE ARTS.
3. “It’s more important to purchase great artwork you love. It will look amazing in any location in your home,” recommends GARY LIPTON of LIPTON FINE ARTS.
4. “Depending on the composition of your painting, it shouldn’t be over-lit. Subtle lighting can create a much more dramatic effect in many instances,” advises JULIE HARVEY of HARVEY ART PROJECTS.
5. “There’s no ‘recipe’ for lighting … each artwork requires some degree of unique thought/strategy. Using the same fixtures and bulbs throughout a residence does not always serve the art. Distance, angle (glare factor), medium, even the wall color and texture influence the design and decision process toward optimal lighting. The investment in lighting is (nearly!) as important as the investment in the art,” explains ANDRIA FRIESEN of FRIESEN GFALLERY.
6. “Lighting the artwork in your home can be as simple as you want it to be and is not as daunting as some may think. In my own home, my artwork is lit with everything from side-table lamps to lights that clip on to the art itself. For those who have the opportunity to install ceiling art lights, it is important to consider the distance they are from the wall. My preference is to see a home with inset directed lights verses track lighting whenever possible,” L'ANNE GILMAN of GILMAN CONTEMPORARY GALLERY recommends.
This article appears in the Fall 2013 Issue of Sun Valley Magazine.