Turn the Lights Back On Geelong Gallery Lighting Upgrade

Established in 1896, the Geelong Gallery is one of Australia’s leading and oldest regional art galleries. To celebrate their 125th birthday, the Geelong Gallery sought 21st-century illumination throughout their exhibition spaces, beginning with the Douglass, Max Bell, and Richardson Exhibition Galleries.

The Challenge
The gallery’s previous lighting system, installed decades ago, was outdated and did not comply with international lighting standards, compromising their permanent and temporary collections. Buckford Sales Engineer, Ronny Schaapherder, has been working with Geelong Gallery for over seven years to replace the halogen installation. “The old analogue halogen installation was becoming too costly for the gallery, due to the high energy usage and the frequent relamping due to the limited lamp life of 2000 hours,” said Ronny Schaapherder. Geelong Gallery urgently needed to update its antiquated lighting system to continue to present exhibitions. However, a project of this size could not be without generous philanthropic support from the public.

The Solution
“Turn the Lights Back On”, a fundraising campaign held by the gallery, launched last year to aid the installation of new lighting. With community support, the gallery could successfully implement a contemporary lighting system.

Fortunately, by the time the funding became available, the ERCO Eclipse and CASAMBI Bluetooth control had just been released. A LED luminaire was the ideal replacement, being significantly lower in energy, requiring minimal maintenance and with a lifetime of 50,000 hours. Transitioning to LED also provides greater lighting flexibility, lower operating costs and reduced heat transmission.

The Result
The brand-new lighting system delivers an effective solution to precisely illuminate the artwork, resulting in an improved focus on conservation and the visitor experience simultaneously. With the combination of wallwashing and framing attachments, the Eclipse generates strong accents drawing the viewer’s attention to the art.

The contour spotlights create a uniform light distribution to ensure that the focus is only on what the gallery wants to be seen, effectively defining the selected artwork. Additionally, with CASAMBI Bluetooth, John Stabb of Geelong Gallery now has complete control of the luminaire’s output with a touch of a button on the app, allowing him to easily adjust the light source in line with the artwork on display.

The upgrade to a high-quality LED lighting solution has enhanced the visitor journey through the Geelong Gallery, and as a result, has exceeded their expectations of the gallery. This is the very first ERCO Eclipse installation that Buckford has supplied in Victoria. Other regional galleries are now looking at Geelong Gallery as inspiration and the epitome of gallery lighting standards.

Photography: Jackie Chan https://www.jackiechan.com.au/

Product: ERCO Eclipse

Gallery Technician: John Stabb