Heritage Lighting

Yale University Manuscripts and Archives Renovation

  • Company
    Cline Bettridge Bernstein Lighting Design
  • Lead Designer
    Francesca Bettridge, Michael Hennnes, Nira Wattanachote, Monica Llamas
  • Categories
    Winner in Heritage Lighting
  • Location
    New Haven, CT, United States

The relighting of Yale’s rare book collection brightens and refreshes the spaces without touching their fragile original ceilings. Previously, the chandeliers were the only light source. The glass cylinders of these chandeliers were too bright, too warm, and did not light the rooms sufficiently. Existing chandeliers were refurbished with dimmable 3000K LED lamps. Discreet linear uplights were added above cabinets, in window pockets and under window sills at perimeter walls. This new composition balances the lighting levels, adding brightness and improved color to the spaces. Most important, previously unnoticed ceiling details are revealed. Adjustable downlights and uplights are hidden within the chandelier in the 35’ high vaulted-ceiling classroom. These discreet sources light the tables below and the ceiling above. Each fixture can be dimmed separately, for added control. Inventive yet unseen enhancements to the original, historic lighting elements magically transform the archives.