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From 1 August 2019 it is necessary to book timed ticketing slots to enter Sir John Soane's Museum. Book now >

The effects of light and shadow profoundly impact how we understand and experience architecture. Bringing together drawings and objects in the spaces of Sir John Soane’s Museum, Lumière Mystérieuse: Soane and the Architecture of Light examines Soane’s innovative use of light and optical devices in architectural design.

Sir John Soane wielded light so successfully that it may as well have been another building material. This exhibition will explore how Soane utilised light, not just through the shapes and ornamentation of his architectural compositions, but also by implementing tools such as top lighting, grilles, coloured glass and mirrors. Together these devices allowed Soane to form lighting effects, as well as effects of shadow and gloom, which dramatically impact the way we experience his work.

Installed in the Museum’s galleries, the exhibition will illustrate how Soane created various lighting effects and moods by showcasing original drawings alongside the objects, such as stained glass and mirrors, which Soane used to transform the experience of his spaces.

This exhibition has been made possible thanks to the support of David and Molly Lowell Borthwick.

Event Info

19 Jun 2019 to 08 Sep 2019

10:00 to 17:00