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Gordon Anson

National Gallery of Art
Deputy Chief of Design, Head of Exhibitions Production, and Chief Lighting Designer
Washington, DC

Gordon O. Anson, IES, IALD, is a designer that specializes in the in the areas of lighting design, museum exhibits, design and planning. 

Since 1977, Gordon Anson has worked in the Design Department at the National Gallery of Art where he has been directly involved more than of over 620 special exhibitions ranging from pre-historic Cycladic art to Contemporary art. Gordon originally joined the staff of the department as the Chief Lighting Designer.  As the Chief Lighting Designer, he is responsible for the lighting design for all temporary and permanent exhibitions.  He conceives and develops key overall lighting design, techniques and specially designed lighting solutions for daylight and electric light that allow the viewer to see the works of art while remaining within conservation constraints in order to minimize any possible damage to the priceless objects.  For the last 16 years Gordon has held the position of the Deputy Chief of the department.  In this position, he oversees the operations of the department including strategic and long-term planning, staffing and daily operations.  Duties include oversight of the planning of all phases of the installation, budgeting, scheduling, construction and logistical aspects of the exhibitions and gallery additions.  The gallery additions range from the newly renovated East Building galleries which added 12,250 square feet of new exhibition space within the existing footprint of the building, including two soaring tower galleries and a rooftop terrace for outdoor sculpture that overlooks Pennsylvania Avenue, the West Building Sculpture Galleries that reflects the historic architecture of John Russell Pope the architect of the West Building of the National Gallery and occupy 19,000 square feet of gallery space to the National Gallery Sculpture Garden that is sited on a 10 acre site.   Mr. Anson has won numerous awards for his work at the National Gallery of Art including two Presidential Design Awards which is the highest award given by the federal government for design excellence.

In addition, Gordon Anson has worked in the areas of museum planning, historical architectural lighting restoration, museum design and exhibition lighting on over 140 projects throughout the world including the restoration and conversion of the former Masonic Grand Lodge into the Tremont Grand in downtown Baltimore, Maryland and the design and construction with I.M. Pei of the Miho Museum in a nature preserve outside Kyoto, Japan.   Many of these projects have received design awards from numerous professional organizations including an American Institute of Architects award for his work with Phillip Johnson on the Amon Carter Museum in Fort Worth, Texas.

Gordon Anson did his graduate and undergraduate studies at California State University at Fullerton and has authored or been the subject of numerous articles ranging from museum exhibitions to the use of daylight in museums. Over the last 20 years Gordon has been involved in research on light and the perception of colors and recently worked on a study of the testing color perception of light produced by LED (Light Emitting Diodes) and its relationship to works of art at the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

Gordon Anson lectures widely on lighting and museum design. He is a member of the Illuminating Engineering Society and the International Association of Lighting Designers.