Artwork of the Sistine Chapel

Sistine Chapel LED Lighting Renovation

Artwork of the Sistine ChapelIn November 2014, the spotlight was on the heavens, maybe even in the way that Michelangelo envisioned it himself. One year later, Osram sat in the spotlight for their role in the innovative lighting solution that made it possible.

500 years after its completion, The Sistine Chapel underwent a lighting renovation that has changed the way we see this historical masterpiece. Finding the right product and installation that offered a glare-free experience with no degradation of the original artwork was no small feat.

With strict oversight from the Vatican conservators, global lighting manufacturer Osram, along with a variety of project partners, designed and installed a custom LED lighting solution for the chapel. Some of the features of the award-winning installation:

  • Uses 7,000 LEDs
  • Emits 50 – 100 lux (vs. 10 – 15 in the previous installation)
  • Consumes up to 90% less energy than the previous installation

LED lighting of the Sistine Chapel before and afterThe goal of the project was to present the appearance of natural sunlight rather than artificial lighting. Specific beam control and adjustable color spectrums allow the fixtures to highlight the special pigmentation of the artwork, probably in a way that the original artists intended.

A unique feature of the installation is a “gala-mode” that allows the lights to swing over their concealed edge and direct the light down for functional, workable use during Vatican business or concerts and fairs.

Osram was recently recognized with an award from the Global SSL Showcase for their contribution to the project.

Top photo: CAPPELLA SISTINA Ceiling via Wikipedia

Renee Carlson

Renee specializes in digital marketing & content development for Pegasus Lighting. When she's not blogging about all-things-light, you’ll find her nestled in the ‘burbs of Raleigh with her husband & three active boys, getting lost in her Kindle, tackling a long list of home improvement projects, or cheering on the Carolina Panthers.