The Sistine ChapelMichelangelo's masterpiece, shines brighter than ever on its 502nd anniversary thanks to a revolutionary new lighting system. The angels, sibyls and prophets, lost at some point in the gloom, are highlighted thanks to the installation of 7,000 LED lamps designed specifically for the Chapel.
At the same time, a powerful ventilation system has been installed to protect the frescoes from humidity, which will allow up to 2,000 people a day to visit the enclosure without causing any damage to one of the largest tourist attractions in the world, which receives more than 6 million people a year.
The total cost of the project was three million euros, of which 1.9 million have only been invested in the lighting system. This undertaking was partly financed by funds from the European Union, and the rest have been donations made to the Vatican for this purpose.
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¿Why is the system so revolutionary? “LEDs have a color spectrum designed specifically for the pigmentation of frescoes, so each color is faithfully reflected, according to how the artist wanted to reflect it.”Said Marco Frascarolo, one of the managers of Fabertechnica, one of the companies behind the new lighting system.
“Each LED can be adjusted to a different color, something we achieved after spending several nights with the curators of the Vatican Museums, trying different combinations of red, blue, white ... trying to do well”, He explained. "When about eight color samples are typically taken in an environment to create an LED system, the one we installed here was created by analyzing 276 different areas of Renaissance paintings”.
Until the 1980s, the enclosure was illuminated only by the windows of the place, but at that time the conservatives discovered that ultraviolet rays were damaging the paintings, to the point that they ran the risk of losing the works if that system was continued.
“LEDs create a better visual experience as they shed light on aspects of the works that until now went unnoticed”, He sentenced.
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