GOGGS Art Chandelier

London, United Kingdom



James Newton

Product + Innovation

Built in the early 1900s, the Government Offices at Great George Street (GOGGS) stand next to the Houses of Parliament. A refurbishment project in 2006 involved bringing together two entities, HM Treasury and the Inland Revenue and Customs and Excise. The chandelier was specially developed to create a powerful statement at the entrance of the newly modernised building.

Working closely with Foster & Partners and manufacturer iGuzzini, the aim was to create a fitting that produced an appropriate level of light, and that was reliable and easy to maintain. The chandelier comprises a series of reflecting rings suspended below the light source allowing a percentage of light to pass through while the remainder is reflected back on to the ceiling and vertical surfaces.

Deceptively simple in appearance, the chandelier involved complex techniques to produce an appropriate light for the space. Computer visualisations, models and mock-ups led to a series of modifications in order to achieve an even illuminance without any shadowing. The final design consists of seven concentric acrylic rings suspended in a conical formation, tapering from 1500mm at the top to 800mm at the bottom over a 7m length.

After researching a range of options, a single Osram Powerstar HQI 1kW lamp was selected. It fulfilled all the criteria: powerful light output, long life and good colour rendering. Installed in the lantern detail at the top of the dome, it can be accessed for maintenance through the external roof. Using a winching system attached to the top of the structural drum, the whole structure can be lowered and stacked for cleaning.

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