Narrative and Concept
The evolution of Russian ballet is shown through the prism of cultural and political revolutions. Lighting solutions follow the scenography and features of 5 architecturally different halls.

Blue light from the famous ballet the Swan Lake became the main leitmotif.

Huge ante-hall for the workshops was separated from entrance by huge gardines and deep blue light.

Rear-hall with stairs was also colored with blue light to create the leitmotif of the whole exhibition.

Aesthetic Impact and Solutions
Each exhibition hall was unique by its design. Lighting solutions were completely different for each hall, that supports the story telling and scenography.

First hall “The Imperial Ballet” was lit as a classic museum with visible light pots that highlighted each exhibit. Annotations were lit by frames to adjust the rectangular form for each text. Displays were uniformly filled with light.

Second hall “Russian Seasons” by Dyagilev ” with mirrored stands required complex lighting solutions. Firstly, to make anti glare lighting for central compositions and showcases. Secondly, to wash with light walls around with Roerich’s decorations to make them visible in mirrors in the central stands.

Third hall “The Soviet ballet” had dark showcases, green walls and a mix of exhibits from painting and sculptures, to photos and costumes. Each segment of the hall was divided by wooden walls. We varied lighting here for each segment separately, but made the unique solution for the hall highlighting the walls and making the architectural and lighting perspective all along the space.

Small secret hall on the first floor 18+ with daguerreotypes of ballet dancers had a broken chandelier with textile as decoration. We created an intimate atmosphere by light through the chandelier to make shadows and crystal reflections.

Stairs at the rear-hall were decorated with three Bezhko chandeliers. We colored the wall behind the staircase to make an impressive view on the stairs and chandeliers.

The fourth and sixth halls “The ballet school” consisted of a lot of useful choreographic information, so we highlighted the walls and left the floor dark to make reading visually comfortable.

The fifth hall “The history of Ballet costume” had a mannequin composition at the center and long angled showcases all along the hall.

The central composition was located under a skylight, without tracks, so all the light from the focal glow slid across the figures.

The long showcases had a backdrop in the form of a stretched white mesh, similar to a ballet tutu. This made the walls transparent. To make the mesh less transparent, we created a theatrical effect: the light lines behind the concealing edge with an oval lens illuminated the mesh along its entire height with glaring light, giving it density.

Because the display cases had corners – there was a high risk of visibility of light sources – so in the corner stands we installed microtracks with accent lights, and in the straight lines a rotary ruler with an oval lens.

Creativity and Innovation / Contextual Fit
The historical floor was dominated by accent wall lighting solutions with rich hanging. Uniform lighting made the volumes of showcases whole, showing the exhibits.

Aiming spotlights in mirror niches with sculptures prevented the visibility of sources, added backlighting by reflection.

The plot and features of the productions determined the location of sources, optics, color temperature, and color in the layouts of performances.

Integration & Detailing
Mirrored islands with historical costumes became the center of the hall of Diaghilev’s enterprise. The combination of optics of linear luminaires provided the standard of illumination, taking into account the small size of the showcases. The reflections of the scenery based on the works of Roerich appeared in the gradient toned mirrors of the islands, thanks to the illumination of the walls. To prevent glare, all spotlights are covered with cinefoil.

User Experience
Taking into account the complexity and richness of the exhibition, we paid great attention to light navigation, color and light indication of the hall and the connection of lighting solutions with the scenography of each hall.

A large number of details and exhibits in a complex room required ordering with the help of lighting.

In many areas, we intentionally created uniform flood lighting to visually consolidate the information scattered across the walls. Somewhere, accent lighting allowed us to separate one theme from another.

The blue color and warm navigational accents made it possible to navigate the space.

On this project all lighting fittings were reused. Big part of track lights was already at the museum. Another part was rented from a rental company in order to save money, but make effective lighting solutions.

LED – stripes and showcase spotlights were reused for another exhibition after that one was finished.

Technical Excellence
Big part of the track lights was from the museum’s collection. The problem was that most of them had no dimming option and anti glare accessories.

For temporary exhibitions with such stuff we use cinema black foil as an anti-glare tube to hide the lighting source. To make the luminescence lower and make the light spot softer we use frost filters.

For the show cases we used low voltage luminaires with anti glare accessories. designed linear lighting fittings with oval and diffusing lenses.

Temporary exhibition ran from February 22 to May 21, 2023, but the lighting fittings were re-used on other temporary projects as they were used before.

We got the project urgently. That was 25th of January when the first call with the client happened. Less than 1 month before the opening for the 4000 sq meters, ongoing architectural construction process.
The purpose was to make the project commercially comfortable, constructively applicable and very urgent.

Our team designed the project in two weeks and helped developing companies make the manufacturing and mounting process easy and fast as well as less expensive.

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