Client Scroope Design Dublin

° View of the interior to show the window space contrasted with the low level display area

The Museum of Country Life at Turlough Park, Castlebar, in County Mayo is set in the landscaped grounds of a large country house in the West of Ireland, and as can be seen in the photograph below, it has large windows along the side elevations, in addition to the large end glazing.

The brief to the lighting designers was to utilize daylight, not so much to conserve energy, although it would have some effect on this, but to capitalize on the beautiful views out to the landscape through the windows.

The museum is designed to stress the importance of country life, so it is the setting for the way of life that created the artefacts to be shown in the museum. There was a desire to allow as much daylight in to the building consistent with the needs of conservation, so that the natural variation of daylight could be enjoyed, as it changes throughout the day and the seasons.

The building has large windows to the south-east and west, allowing both high levels s of daylight, and direct sun penetration. S The problem presented to the I ighting « designer was therefore to provide an > impression of natural light throughout the § circulation areas of the building, whilst 3; controlling the levels of light within the displays.

Several solutions were adopted: window film was applied to virtually every window to reduce the light levels overall, without destroying the view and where views were not important baffles were designed to direct light away from the artefacts, to the ceiling.

To solve the problem of sun penetration on the south and east elevations two-metre high screens parallel to the windows were placed in front of the display areas, giving the opportunity to the exhibition designer to create a low light level exhibition area within the limitation of 50 lux.

The layout of the building shows how the screens were placed, and this can be read in conjunction with the section to illustrate the the differentiation between the area lit by the windows for circulation, and the display area beyond with its low light level to ensure the conservation of the artefacts.

° View of the interior to show the window space contrasted with the low level display area

An exhibition of'The Blacksmith'

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Plan of screening
Typical plan of the 4-storey building

Section through the screening

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