Second, since the exhibition Hans Hofmann: Works on Paper almost entirely comprises artworks on paper (go figure), and paper is one of the most delicate mediums, we must ensure we take very good care of all the pieces in the exhibition. Paper can be adversely affected by the amount of light that strikes the surface. Light is an “electromagnetic wave.” It is very similar to the waves that bring you radio stations, take x-ray images of your bones, and even cook your food in the microwave. Light is visible to our eyes, unlike the other waves I just mentioned. However, light does have an invisible partner that can do some real damage to artwork. That partner is referred to as “ultraviolet light” and is another form of an electromagnetic wave that we cannot see but is ever present in our environment. UV is the same light waves that give you a sunburn when you're outside for too long. If they can do that much damage to your skin, just imagine what they could do to some flimsy paper. So to reduce the amount of damage to the artwork from UV rays, some lenders require we display their art with a limited amount of light.
I hope this explanation helps you understand why the lights are so low in our newest exhibition. You will notice this difference once you first enter the gallery, but after a few moments, your eyes will adjust and you should have no problem enjoying the artwork of Hans Hofmann.