Artists Against the Incandescent Lamp Ban

Posted May 5, 2010 // Tagged as Blog // 30 Comments ↓

An influential group of artists recently published the following statement in the Neue Westfalische newspaper in Germany. Thanks to PLD Magazine for translating this and sending it to me.

Painter Georg Baselitz, designer Ingo Maurer and around 100 other renowned artists, designers and architects continue to demand that the EU Parliament decision to phase out the incandescent lamp be revoked. Baselitz claims that he and his colleagues from the world of art and design do not want to have to forfeit being able to choose exactly what light they can use, or how their works of art are illuminated, saying that the incandescent lamp is a key part of the overall lighting culture. And he adds that halogen lamps are indispensable when it comes to the illumination of art, architectural spaces, stages and facades.
Since people have started using so-called energy-saving lamps, the consumption of energy in private households has risen, as experts predicted. According to the UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs: “When the heat dissipated by conventional incandescent lamps is reduced, the missing warmth is compensated for by the central heating system”. The savings effect is thus zero – the money saved on lighting is spent on increased heating costs.
On 22. April, 2010 the artistic activists from German-speaking Europe filed a petition with the European Commission in Brussels: “We artists, exhibition designers, museum curators, architects and designers cannot accept the EU phasing out the incandescent lamp”.

We demand the decision to phase out the incandescent lamp be revoked:
Volker Albus, Georg Baselitz, Hilla Becher, Stephan Berg, Daniel Birnbaum, Christian Boros, Marc Brandenburg, Arno Brandlhuber, Mark Braun, Joachim Brohm, André Buchmann, Daniel Buren, Anthony d’Offay, Thomas Demand, Marie-Theres Deutsch, Jörg Ebers, Clemens Fahnemann, Harald Falckenberg, Yvonne Fehling und Jennie Peiz, Thomas Florschuetz, Ceal Floyer, Hubertus Gaßner, Ingvild Goetz, Bärbel Grässlin, Thomas Grässlin, Durs Grünbein, Andreas Gursky, Nanette Hagstotz, Mathias Hahn, Jitka Hanzlová, Harald Hauswald, Eberhard Havekost, Wulf Herzogenrath, Julian Heynen, Candida Höfer, Carsten Höller, Klaus Honnef, Janneke de Vries, Gregor Jansen, Ann Veronica Janssens, Daniel Josefsohn, Johannes Kahrs, Astrid Klein, Barbara Klemm, Hans Kollhoff, Karola Kraus, Mateo Kries, Mischa Kuball, Daniel Lergon, Veit Loers, Philomene Magers, Ingo Maurer, Andreas Mühe, Heike Munder, Carsten Nicolai, Jennie Peiz, Susanne Pfeffer, Tobias Rehberger, Anselm Reyle, Bernhart Schwenk, Werner Spies, Monika Sprüth, Urs Stahel, Julia Stoschek, Katja Strunz, Thomas Struth, Hadi Teherani, Matteo Thun, Rosemarie Trockel, Philipp von Matt, Michael Werner, Thomas Weski, Robert Wilson, Rein Wolfs, Beat Wyss, Felix Zdenek, Ralf Ziervogel, Michael Zimmermann, Armin Zweite

Source: Neue Westfälische newspaper

30 Responses

  1. peter

    May 10th, 2010 at 10:54

    Interesting, thank you for that
    it seems the dissenting voices are mostly heard in Germany …..
    only Germans on the EU environment Committee where active against the ban,
    only in Germany did a bulb manufacturer get worried about
    pre-ban losses suggesting a tax alternative
    – and of course there was the Greenpeace Hamburg commissioned Klaus Stanjek study here

  2. Joe Kiddle

    June 18th, 2010 at 09:19

    It’s a good point and there are a lot of people who are going to lose out because of the ban. We made sure at Ryness that we were stocked up to keep giving people the option of which bulb they would prefer.

    Lots of people have come in to our stores expressing a desire to stock up on old light bulbs for their old lamps or chandeliers.

    Although energy saving bulbs, especially LEDS are getting better, there are still many people worried about having to make the switch.

    As I said we still have lots in stock, but how much longer is a bit of a worry.

  3. Ron Lentjes

    August 12th, 2010 at 15:10

    I totally support NOT banning incandescents. I am a scientist/aritsy type combined -best way to describe it. They are looking at Watts only. 3 types: incandescent / fluorescent / LED. Every light has its use. LED great for displays indoor and outdoor like clock displays speed signs so on. Shit for ambient lighting. Fluorescent is ok for ambient lighting in office but it is a VERY AGGRESSIVE light and some students have trouble concentrating under them. When you come home from harsh lighting of fluoresents I strongly suggest INCANDESCENT as it is a health, warm, relaxing (some of this is subconscious) and should be used in homes. I thing CFLs should NOT be used in homes at all. I can only see this leading to lots of stress than some people may not realize. I also do photography. Incandescents light up areas in a way no other light can. DIfferent works of air / paints should be lit accordingly. You should have a CHOICE. You can’t take a way a CATEGORY of light!! Don’t make customers so angry they have no more choise in proper lighting. OK, you going to ban white sofas? Now we can’t enjoy black leather sofas. Oh but you say white ones are more efficient. The EU has a lack of ability to understand HUMAN FACTORS. They are applying mathematics to a human factor situation. SHAME ON THEM. Give the customer / artist the choise. Now that Australia is banned, it is a SICK place to visit. My favorite pubs / bars / restaurants / so on all have these ALFUL CFLS that totally WRECK the atmosphere. EU get a grip. Learn about humans. Stop being such SOALESS creeps! You are screwing up your planet!

  4. central heating replacement

    September 6th, 2010 at 08:57

    Hey, ……you have a great blog here! I’m definitely going to bookmark you!

  5. David Benyon

    January 5th, 2011 at 01:37

    I do use CFL lamps in my home although they have several drawbacks. In my living room I use TWO 75 watt equivalent lamps in a Y adapter as they just aren’t bright enough. Another problem is EMC (interference with radio signals). I have added ferrite chokes to all the bulb holder wires, the interference has gone and so has the “sick building” effect. One plastic lampshade has been spoiled by the UV radiation that these lamps emit so the lamps are useless for museums. Glass lampshades seem to be OK (not darkened by UV). Maybe the real reason for CFL is that governments want the tungsten to make armaments.

  6. Alexander Rivas

    April 20th, 2011 at 18:19

    I paint occasionally and I like the light the old style bulbs give off

  7. Craig Ander

    April 21st, 2011 at 05:17

    I love this! I feel like I’ve had many conversations about my appreciation for incandescent light, and I can’t believe there is a whole site dedicated to its survival!

    Good on ya!

  8. Reece Walters

    April 25th, 2011 at 01:07

    I can’t believe consumption of energy has *risen* due to the new bulbs, but go figure. Anyway, it’s the same as LED Christmas lights — they just don’t give off the same warm glow as its predecessor.

  9. Gina Cittone

    April 28th, 2011 at 01:20

    Theatrical productions would offer entirely different experiences if they were forced to dispense with lights that are considered “energy-suckers”. Ultimately, it should be the choice of the designer what materials they want to use.

  10. Bronwyn Terrell

    April 29th, 2011 at 15:11

    Great thread going on here.

    I envision artists sneaking through dark alleyways to pick up incandescent bulbs on the black market…

  11. Marion Peterson

    April 29th, 2011 at 19:17

    @Ron: well put!

    Our whole house uses incandescent bulbs. We are environmentally conscious, but the CFLs cast a sickening light, even the warm version.

    We won’t be switching, thank you very much.

  12. Darrin Walker

    May 1st, 2011 at 15:44

    So, it’s almost a year later… I’m really curious if this petition was successful…?

  13. Paul

    May 5th, 2011 at 02:10

    Elevating energy consumption just can’t be helped. Considering the growing progress of technology the world experiences today, one would want to take advantage of the benefits of it. Thus, will result into a much bigger energy consumption.

  14. Scott

    May 6th, 2011 at 20:09

    I work a lot with shadows, and the new bulbs definitely don’t create the same effect. In fact, shadows are practically non-existent.

  15. Gemma

    May 7th, 2011 at 14:02

    I love how the newer bulbs have “warm” versions that are supposed to mimic its predecessor. However, the “warm” is only “slightly less cold and still fluorescent-like”

  16. Peter

    May 8th, 2011 at 21:28

    I would hate to have to buy incandescent bulbs on the black market!

  17. Jamie

    May 10th, 2011 at 08:55

    While it’s easy to go with the green vote and agree that incandescent bulbs should be ruled out, I also feel strongly that people should be given the choice in places other than the home to use whatever light is their preference.

    i’m sure there are other sources of light that are less green than incandescent bulbs, but these are not the type that are used on mass in society.

    I hope the campaign is successful.

  18. Morris B.

    May 12th, 2011 at 04:11

    I think fluorescent lamps should be banned. They give me a headache.

  19. Duane Smith

    May 12th, 2011 at 17:58

    In South Africa CFL’s have been distributed by the millions, in particular in poor areas. In particular in these areas, where the houses are very small, the heat distributed by traditional incandescent bulbs made a contribution towards warming a room – which is no more the case with CFLs. My wife and I have been using them for some time now and a few important things have surfaced. They are supposed to last for a very long time, but they don’t. It’s more expensive by far (all things considered) to have CFLs in stead of incandescent bulbs. The most important thing of all, however, has to do with safety issues. Apparently it’s a health hazards when they break and nobody ever educated people what to do in a situation like that. Finally, how do you dispose of CFLs? They should not be dumped at the ordinary dumping sites.

  20. Gym in Milwaukee

    May 22nd, 2011 at 06:07

    It should not be banned. Anyway consumers do have a choice and is responsible for their choices. I do agree that incandescent lamp is already part of our culture.

  21. Quinn

    May 30th, 2011 at 22:30

    Is there any update as to whether this petition was successful?

  22. Kevan Shaw

    May 30th, 2011 at 22:54

    Certainly German members of the European Parliament have been spooked by the resistance to the ban. They do not feel happy and think they were mis-directed by the commission and the industry into believing the ban would be happily accepted by consumers!

    Kevan Shaw

  23. John Chambers

    June 12th, 2011 at 20:15

    Typical EU. Didn’t do its home work as with a lot of other balls ups it has made .The sooner this band of corrupt individuals fall apart the better.

  24. Lighting Designers

    July 19th, 2011 at 19:21

    I think that it’s very important to fit the correct type and intensity of lighting in a given scenario. Energy consumption isn’t the only issue here, what about people who suffer from migraines and headaches as a result of incorrect lighting?

  25. Michael Greenwood

    July 19th, 2011 at 19:23

    I don’t know what the fate of incandescent bulbs is going to be, we all know that our governments are phasing them out but I for one definitely prefer them and will be stocking up on them!

  26. Lighting Designer

    July 19th, 2011 at 19:28

    Consumers should be given the right to choose to purchase and use whichever type of luminaires that they wish.

  27. Personal Injury Lawyer

    July 23rd, 2011 at 18:48

    It makes me think of a science fiction scenario where artists will have to find incandescent bulbs on the black market, in a seedy part of town. Lit by energy-saving lamps, of course.

  28. Randy D.

    October 12th, 2011 at 19:46

    Why do I feel like there should be a tete-thon staged for the preservation of the incandescent bulb? In all fairness, I know they may not be the most environmentally sound. But they are amazing for illustration.

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  30. Alex

    August 26th, 2016 at 18:48

    Our partners use them all the time in restoration projects. I think they should be preserved as of now…

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