The Carnegie Museum of Art Light! exhibition presented visitors with a rich experience of light in an unprecedented collection of paintings, books, lamps, lenses, and related scientific instruments from around the world. Visitors experienced how light and life changed as society gradually acquired the ability to turn night into day during the 150-year period covered by the exhibition. Co-organized by the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, the exhibition received international praise. The London Daily Telegraph called Light! “the most important exhibition” of the year.
Springboard principal Paul Rosenblatt was involved in the design and conceptualization of the exhibition at the early stages of its planning when he was on the staff of Damianos Anthony Architects. He traveled to Amsterdam to meet with van Gogh Museum curators and developed the design based upon a deep understanding of curatorial approach and educational goals.
The exhibition design’s bold organization originated from the imagined path of a beam of light as it passed through a prism. The concept developed into a dramatic study in contrasts, using rich historical colors and prismatic forms to frame art and artifacts. Visitors proceeded through a sequence of galleries that thematically introduced the parallel developments of light, art, and science. Springboard’s exhibition design reinforced the inter-relationship between these fields, creating clear and provocative juxtapositions of art and scientific instruments.
photography by Ed Massary