Helvar Helps Art Lovers See The Light

Marble statues and masterpieces, mummies and Mediterranean moods. With its unique blend of art and magnificent architecture, Glyptoteket Art Museum is a place for active contemplation and quiet repose, located in the heart of Copenhagen, Denmark.

Founded in 1888 by the brewer Carl Jacobsen, the art museum contains two main departments combining art in impressive architectural surroundings. The Department of Antiquities houses collections of Egyptian, Greek, Etruscan and Roman art, providing an intriguing stroll through 3500 years of art and history.

The challenge

The Glyptotek has always been a daylight museum. This means that the light in the exhibition halls primarily comes in via skylight windows. In 2015, the museum introduced evening lighting, so people could visit the museum until 10 pm on Thursdays, so it needed to up its game on the lighting front.

“We were very excited about the opportunity to work on this project,” says VANPEE Denmark sales manager Ken Røgen, Helvar’s partner in Denmark. “Glyptoteket Art Museum technical personnel was clear on the main objectives – to implement a highly flexible lighting control that can be set up easily, so we introduced a touch screen option allowing the facility manager to change lighting control scenes and settings via an iPad. The most challenging part was to make scene scenarios, so the artificial light looks like a daylight. We succeeded by giving the customers 10 more opening hours a week.”

The solution

Created as a daylight museum in 1897, originally the Glyptotek has functioned as an art museum with very limited electric light. That has made visits during the dark winter months challenging for the public and has imposed natural constraints on the museum’s opening hours since it was founded.

The Glyptotek has now been able to expand its weekly opening time and offer a distinctly different museum experience after sunset. This has been made possible by new lighting throughout the building, a renovation that cost 12 million Danish krona and was funded by the New Carlsberg Foundation.

The benefits

During the day, the sculpture halls at the Glyptotek is still lit by the influx of natural daylight through the characteristic skylights and high daylight windows. The new lighting is more than an extension of the daytime experience of the art works.

It is a new and flexible type of museum lighting that can be adapted for the individual halls and add to the experience by simple technical means. The light creates drama and a hierarchy between the exhibited objects, and thus creating a different and varied museum experience.

The choice of light was made in close cooperation between the museum, the architect and the lighting designer.

The lighting control is managed with a Helvar DIGIDIM Router system and the 800 spots are controlled by Helvars uSee interface. 910 routers and 90 pcs.452 universal dimmers are all operated by an iPad with scene set app installed.

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