Light went beyond lamps some years ago, and spread to innovative wall and ceiling fixtures. Track lighting and recessed lighting illuminated difficult spots; dimmers, bulbs in different shapes and a wide variety of watts helped to keep the lighting interesting. But still most light was divided into either "warm white" or "bright white."

Now those two age-old hues are being outshone by a new series of track fixtures with colored filters. Using either a parabolic lens or simple glass filters that fit into special lights with clips, intense colored light is bringing drama to the American living room. A black and white work of art can be beautifully illuminated with a cool blue light, advises Craig Rasmussen of Illuminations at the Washington Design Center. For a warmer effect, pale pinks or yellows can bring out colors in a painting or other form of art. For dramatic ambient light, a simple reflector light, without the parabolic lens, can give a subtle, diffused effect.

What are the advantages of colored light? "People look better under warm tones," says Rasmussen. That should be incentive enough. CAPTION: Picture, Drama in three acts: a single reflector fixture (without track) by Litelab, $59; filters shown in pink, blue and green ($12 to $15 each); other colors available; LIGHTS BY LITELAB INC.; LIGHTS AND SETTING PROVIDED BY ILLUMINATIONS; SOFA BY LIGNEROSET. PHOTOGRAPH BY JOHN McDONNELL