|A giant sculpture of Mongolian Genghis Khan has been erected in Marble Arch by Westminster Council as part of its ongoing City of Sculpture Festival. |
Sculpted by Dashi Namdakov and loaned by the Halcyon Galleries as part of their international public art programme, the 16 foot sculpture celebrates the 850th anniversary of the armour-clad warlord sitting astride his horse.
Due to the complex nature of trying to illuminate such an intriguing piece along with previous bad experiences of illuminations using just bland floodlights, Halcyon Galleries approached lighting designers DHA Designs to conceive a more exciting and innovative lighting scheme.
Simon Marks of DHA Designs, comments ‘We faced several challenges lighting such a tall and striking exhibit. There is a lot of light pollution in the surrounding environs including a large 60 foot horse head sculpture opposite so we didn’t want the sculpture to be lost. We also needed to design a scheme which would not only light the statue but also provide depth and definition, drawing out the detailed relief on the armour and livery.’
Following in-depth discussion and plans, the finished scheme uses two defined areas of lighting; light fittings set into the base of the plinth to uplight the belly and underside of the horse and a separate plinth, designed by DPS Guard, set several metres back with fittings to illuminate Khan’s face and chest.
DHA Designs approached Light Projects to help supply suitable fittings. It was decided to use uplighters for the plinth and Light Projects’ Minor 4 Remote spotlights on the second plinth to illuminate the upper parts of the statue. Due to the tough environment and area, a specially designed cage was installed over the fittings to prevent the fittings from being damaged or removed.
The Light Projects Minor 4 Remote spotlights were supplied in a black finish with 35W 25° flood GX10 CMH lamps to pick out points of interest within the sculpture as well as more general illumination.
Simon Marks continues, ‘We used these fittings as they provided the perfect mix of robustness, flexibility and ease of use and were impressed with their build quality and finish. These fittings are very durable and require no maintenance which is important on this scheme as there is no one with specific responsibility to monitor them. In addition they are adaptable, which is of added benefit as they can easily be adapted for future installations with only minor adjustments and lamp changing.
We are delighted with the finished effect and have received positive feedback from everyone from the Gallery to the general public. Light Projects bent over backwards to help us get these fittings to us within a tight, two-week, turnaround period.’