Lighting in Design

ERCO lighting tools feature in one of the most dramatic museum projects this year: The lighting supplied by the company for the exhibition and outdoor areas of the new Fondazione Prada in Milan demonstrates how sophisticated lighting solutions are implemented efficiently in visionary museums.

The expansive complex, designed by Dutch star architect and Pritzker Architecture Prize winner Rem Koolhaas (OMA, Rotterdam), arose from the transformation of a distillery dating back to around 1910, in the south of Milan. The exteriors and the exhibition spaces of the Fondazione Prada are equipped with a range of Erco LED lighting tools. These were selected by the cultural foundation, spearheaded by Miuccia Prada and Patrizio Bertelli with consistent support from Erco, as a result of many years of experience in museum lighting. The lighting tools offer an ideal solution for the varied and complex lighting tasks required in a museum context – with a not untypical combination of uniform, glare-free ambient lighting and exact accent lighting for prized exhibits.

ERCO Project Fondazione Prada Milano 001Ancient bronzes and marble sculptures in avant garde ambience

In the 'Podium' that forms the central museum section of the Fondazione Prada with glass façades on three sides, Parscan spotlights, Optec contour spotlights and Pantrac lens wallwashers are combined to deliver an excellent combination of highly professional LED lighting tools. Parscan 12 W with Spherolit lens with spot and flood distributions complement Parscan 4 W with narrow spots to illuminate and accentuate the ancient masterpieces for the opening exhibition, bringing out the finest details of the bronzes and marble sculptures in sharp contours for a three-dimensional effect delivered with photometric precision. On the first level of the 'Podium', Pantrac LED lens wallwashers 24 W, 4000 K, illuminate the wall surfaces uniformly in neutral white light resembling daylight – a lighting concept that produces a wide and spacious impression of the room.

The permanent exhibition in the 'Haunted House', a renovated four-level section of the old distillery designed by Rem Koolhaas with gold leaf cladding, displays masterpieces from the collection. Parscan spotlights 24 W, used here with wide flood distribution, achieve uniform ambient lighting in the exhibition spaces, while Parscan 12 W with spot and flood lenses allow the exhibits to come to the foreground of attention. The minimalist design of the black Parscan spotlights blends unobtrusively into the structural steel work of the existing building, thereby directing the focus entirely onto the illuminated exhibits. Finally, the flanking picture galleries feature Parscan spotlights 12 W and lens wallwashers 12 W for uniform illumination of the paintings on the wall, and emphasise their expressive colours.

Where Erco LED lighting tools in the exhibition spaces are used with neutral white light, the exterior sections between the individual buildings of the complex are illuminated using warm white light. Beamer projectors in 36 W with flood and wide flood distributions set off the paved pathways, while the special outdoor floodlights of the Lightscan range provide lighting for the ground around the entrance areas. Excellent glare control of the Erco outdoor luminaires ensures a high level of visual comfort and makes certain that the light shines only, and precisely, where it is needed.

ERCO GmbH: www.erco.com

Photo credits: ERCO GmbH, www.erco.com, photographer: Dirk Vogel.

Contact Lighting in Design

Title: Editor
Name: Karen Grant
Email: crownmag@crown.co.za
Phone: +27 11 622-4770
Fax: +27 11 615-6108

Title: Advertising Manager
Name: Carin Hannay
Email: carinh@crown.co.za
Phone: +27 11 622-4770
Fax: +27 11 615-6108

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