There are a few standard methods to lighting framed art, though one method has become a favorite among illumination designers and installers. Surface-mounted track fixtures are still popular, as well as recessed halogen cans, and both are in homes and galleries around the world.
Contour projectors, though, have become the top choice for any high-end installation and are made specifically for illuminating various creative subjects.
Lighting framed art with a contour projector is the best solution in nearly any setting. A contour projector is installed inside the ceiling and finished with a discreet cover plate. It is built flush with the ceiling and only needs a small aperture to fire the halogen beam through, so it’s the most subtle and streamlined fixture available. Contour projectors are also more reliable when it comes to producing an even spread of illumination, and their halogen lamps are the best on the market for rendering color. The difference between a halogen fixture and an incandescent or fluorescent fixture is enormous, as it will bring out the true colors in the subject.
Contour projectors are most prized for their ability to produce a unique look that other fixtures cannot manage. Prior to installation, the projector is fitted with a masking implement. This consists of either a cut template or a set of adjustable shutters. The mask confines the illumination to the subject’s edges, which means no spill illumination. The result is an intensely bright piece of art mounted to a stretch of wall that is much darker. The high contrast makes the subject appear more saturated and vibrant; a stark effect that only a contour projector is capable of.