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Lighting Art Covered By Glass / Lighting Highly Reflective Smooth Finish Art

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A highly reflective surface that is smooth includes a near mirror-like finish. Examples of highly reflective smooth finished art surfaces include glossy photographs, glass covered art, and lacquered finishes like those found on Asian screens.

When highly reflective art is positioned above eye level, the art’s mirror-like surface can reflect an art light’s source and cause it to be seen on the art. The visible light source is limited to the angle of incidence, and its reflection can be seen along the upper portion of the art as illustrated in Drawing 1. The light source in Drawing 1 is positioned directly in front of the painting, so the light from this art light position will be visible above eye level when viewing the art from a forward position. This source will disappear only when the highly reflective art is viewed from the side.

In Drawing 2, the highly reflective art is in the same position as Drawing 1. Two art lights are used instead of one. The art lights are positioned offset from the art edges to manipulate where reflection will occur. Using this technique, there will be no light source reflection when viewing the art from a forward position. However, the light source reflection will be visible when viewing the art from the sides.

This art lighting tip is for illuminating small to wide width paintings. How to illuminate a very wide highly reflective painting may be found on a different art lighting tip. Field testing for reflection is always recommended prior to installation of the Wendel art lighting system.

The above art lighting techniques and tips are for reference only and are not specifications. Wendel art lighting specialists are available to assist the art lighting consultant and art lighting designer with specifying Wendel art lighting fixtures including placement, courtesy of Wendelighting. Please forward drawings or a completed Wendel WORKSHEET to: info@wendelighting.com.