Aureols for the Gilbert Collection at the Museum of Decorative Arts


A major grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund has financed the museum as part of the restoration of Somerset House, an 18th century architectural masterpiece by Sir William Chambers.

The Brief
LVS were asked by the Director of the Gilbert Collection to join the team on site to resolve the design problems they faced with the lighting in the main galleries. LVS took on the job to provide a solution to the very specific requirements of the objects to be lit, which involved working closely with Sir Arthur Gilbert and Jacqueline Strologo of the Heather Trust.

The Solution
LVS specified the new Aureol Beam Shaper. The fittings were a direct fit to the Erco track system and provided much better optical performance than the previous fittings, with accurate shaping and even fields of illumination. Poor positioning of tracks in the original installation was overcome by the flexibility and adaptability of the Aureols, allowing often difficult 'shots' to be achieved.

From a design point of view the excellent performance coupled with a clean design with little or no light spill made the fitting an ideal, discreet choice. One of the central concepts as far as LVS was concerned was to ensure that the lighting installation did not detract from the general feel of the galleries, with Sir Arthur very keen that the objects should appear to 'float' in light. The Aureol fittings met both these needs very successfully.

The Installation
The clients were very happy with the overall improvement in lighting throughout the galleries. LVS specialists worked for four days prior to the official opening to install and focus the fittings.

With any specialist fitting such as the Aureol, the installation is critical to ensure both correct positioning and focus: again, the intelligent design of the fitting, with grub screws to secure the pan and tilt helps to ensure the long term integrity of the installation.

For the end user, the electronic transformer and enclosed optics means a good lamp life coupled with easy cleaning.


Client The Heather Trust for the Arts/Sir Arthur Gilbert.
Lighting Consultant Rupert Little, Technical Director, LVS Ltd.

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