All posts in Lighting

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Pixel Forest and Worry Will Vanish

Immersive LED installation by artist Pipilotti Rist goes on view at Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

After a smashing success as part of a retrospective of visual and multimedia artist Pipilotti Rist at New York’s New Museum, Pixel Forest and Worry Will Vanish were acquired by the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. The Swiss artist created Pixel Forest with lighting designer Kaori Kuwabara, constructing thousands of hanging jewel-toned LED lights that shift in waves of color. Worry Will Vanish is a projected video that occupies a corner of the room and takes the viewer through dreamy nature scenes and distorted views of the human body. Conceived separately but displayed together, the immersive experience transports the viewer into Rist’s world.

Pipilotti Rist: Pixel Forest and Worry Will Vanish Museum of Fine Arts, Houston 1001 Bissonnet, Houston Through September 17

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Green Light

Olafur Eliasson invites refugees and asylum seekers to craft lighting designs at The Moody Center for the Arts

The Moody Center for the Arts at Rice University opened in Houston to much fanfare with exhibitions by practitioners including Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson and Japanese collective teamLab to kick off its first season. Green light – An artistic workshop is the brainchild of Eliasson in collaboration with the Thyssen Bornemisza Art Contemporary (TBA21) of Vienna. In its first trip to the U.S., the workshop aims to give refugees and asylum seekers a “green light” to participate in a variety of programs to elicit creativity and community. The workshop invites participants to construct modular green lamps designed by Eliasson out of recycled materials, which can stand alone as singular units or be stacked into more complex constructions. The hope for the work is to create an environment where communities can collide and create together in a playful and collaborative environment. “Green light is an act of welcoming, addressed both to those who have fled hardship and instability in their home countries and to the residents of the cities receiving them,” said Eliasson in a statement. “I hope Green light shines light on some of the challenges and responsibilities arising from the current refugee crisis in Europe and throughout the world.”

Green light – An artistic workshop The Moody Center for the Arts at Rice University 6100 Main Street, Houston Through May 6, 2017

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Hue Better Believe It

2016 Best of Design Award for Lighting > Indoor: Planned Parenthood Queens by Cline Bettridge Bernstein Lighting Design
The Architect’s Newspaper (AN)’s inaugural 2013 Best of Design Awards featured six categories. Since then, it's grown to 26 exciting categoriesAs in years past, jury members (Erik Verboon, Claire Weisz, Karen Stonely, Christopher Leong, Adrianne Weremchuk, and AN’s Matt Shaw) were picked for their expertise and high regard in the design community. They based their judgments on evidence of innovation, creative use of new technology, sustainability, strength of presentation, and, most importantly, great design. We want to thank everyone for their continued support and eagerness to submit their work to the Best of Design Awards. We are already looking forward to growing next year’s coverage for you.

2016 Best of Design Award for Lighting > Indoor: Planned Parenthood Queens—Diane L. Max Health Center

Lighting Design: Cline Bettridge Bernstein Lighting Design Location: Queens, NY

Planned Parenthood’s new clinic in Queens transforms a former storage warehouse into a welcoming ambulatory healthcare center. Using the building’s generous new windows as inspiration, LED light coves in bold colors punctuate a sleek, white interior. These colorful elements work with signage and furnishings to support wayfinding and spatial organization and the overall design embodies a modern, forward-thinking spirit, representative of the center’s youthful clientele. A thoughtful combination of LED and fluorescent sources achieves a 5 percent energy savings beyond the stringent standards and also meets the project’s modest budget. Light, color, and architecture are woven together to create a friendly, upbeat health center that will serve as a guide for future Planned Parenthood facilities.

Architect Stephen Yablon Architecture

Signage & Environmental Graphics Calori & Vanden-Eynden Dimming Ballasts Lutron Fixed-Color LED Cove Lights iLight Technologies Adjustable Downlights Lucifer Lighting

Honorable Mention, Lighting > Indoor: Lincoln Square Synagogue

Lighting Design: Tillotson Design Associates Location: New York, NY

Small recessed LED downlights in the synagogue’s ceiling create the effect of a starry night, while LED coves with resin diffusers spill soft light onto the acoustical walls, accentuating its form and completing the imagery of a nomadic tented structure under a desert sky.

Honorable Mention, Lighting > Indoor: The Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Assumption 

Architect: MBH Architects Location: San Francisco, CA

In order to maintain the character of this important cathedral while modernizing its lighting, long-life solutions like LED and fluorescent fixtures as well as DMX lighting were seamlessly integrated. The system creates studio-quality imagery for television recordings while maintaining a warm glow.

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Shining Example

2016 Best of Design Award in Architectural Lighting > Outdoor: SteelStacks Campus by L’Observatoire International

The Architect’s Newspaper (AN)’s inaugural 2013 Best of Design Awards featured six categories. Since then, it's grown to 26 exciting categoriesAs in years past, jury members (Erik Verboon, Claire Weisz, Karen Stonely, Christopher Leong, Adrianne Weremchuk, and AN’s Matt Shaw) were picked for their expertise and high regard in the design community. They based their judgments on evidence of innovation, creative use of new technology, sustainability, strength of presentation, and, most importantly, great design. We want to thank everyone for their continued support and eagerness to submit their work to the Best of Design Awards. We are already looking forward to growing next year’s coverage for you.

Architectural Lighting > Outdoor: SteelStacks Campus

Lighting Design: L'Observatoire International Location: Bethlehem, PA

The SteelStacks campus turns the former Bethlehem Steel Plant into a dynamic arts and cultural campus with a community center. Highlighting the history of the area, L’Observatoire International worked within the 10-acre core of the site to create multiple performance venues, plazas, and parks. The campus is crowned by the Hoover-Mason Trestle, a walkway rehabilitated from a former elevated railway, and features Levitt Pavilion, an angular open-air stage with monumental blast furnaces as a backdrop. The thoughtful attention to detail and theatrical approach to lighting—which illuminates the structure from within and behind to better highlight its volumes—emphasizes the drama of Bethlehem’s industrial heritage.

Landscape Architecture Wallace Roberts & Todd

Horticultural Design Patrick Cullina LED Lighting Philips Color Kinetics Lighting Fixtures Winona Lighting General Contractor Boyle Construction

Honorable Mention: Architectural Lighting > Outdoor: Eventide

Design Studio: Sosolimited Location: San Diego, CA

Sosolimited conceived a dynamic, nature-inspired architectural lighting system that brings the Cedar Kettner Garage to life. Beyond responding to actual lighting conditions in real time, the lighting system includes a user-friendly interface that allows staff to easily change the animations for holidays and events.

Honorable Mention: Architectural Lighting > Outdoor: Daryl Roth Theatre Facade Renovation

Lighting Design: Cline Bettridge Bernstein Lighting Design Location: New York, NY

Charged with transforming a 1907 landmark bank building into a theater with a new lighting structure, Cline Bettridge Bernstein Lighting Design sought to turn the facade into its own marquis. The versatility and precision of the lighting fixture illuminates its architectural details while lending the theater a lustrous presence.

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Flipping The Switch

Boston is getting lit tonight at City Hall
Tonight, the City of Boston is getting lit. The city is opening up City Hall Plaza, the front lawn of Boston's best-known (and most-hated) Brutalist building, to food trucks, carnival style–games, and beer-swilling citizens to celebrate its latest attempt to gussy up Government Center. Attendees at Light Bright Beer Garden, this year's last Beer Garden on the Bricks, will witness a colorful light display on the angular concrete massing so deliberately stripped of ornamentation. The official promotion video below gives a hint of the light display in action: If early online comments on the event are any indication, bright primary-school colors might not be enough to make jaded Bostonians love architecture firm Kallmann McKinnell & Wood's difficult creation. YouTube user Shaun Beacham writes: "We're sorry the building looks like a prison, but we put some lights on it and now it's a colorful prison!" A few pints in, Shaun, and it might not look so bad! The event begins at 6:30 p.m. tonight at City Hall Plaza. Can't make it? Follow 
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L’Observatoire de la lumière

Daniel Buren’s “Observatory of Light” set to open at Fondation Louis Vuitton
Starting on May 11 this year, Frank Gehry's Fondation Louis Vuitton building in Paris is set to host a dazzling glass installation by French conceptual artist, Daniel Buren. Titled L’Observatoire de la lumière (or Observatory of Light) the installation will see some 3,600 tiles of glass alongside a series of colored filters, broken up at regular intervals by alternating vertical white and blank stripes. The articulation of light and interplay of color spans across the building's twelve classic Gehry-style volumes, known as "sails," working in sync with the Gehry's design which, until now, employed a colorless paneled facade. Making use of thirteen different colors, arranged to create the illusion of forms disappearing at different times during the day, light entering the building through these filters will enhance the interior spaces, changing their spatial qualities. Bernard Arnault, President of the Fondation Louis Vuitton said “Daniel Buren has designed a grandiose project, pertinent and enchanting, the result of a real dialogue with Frank Gehry and his building.” "The transparency and quality of a colour projected by means of a coloured filter, as I see it, make it much more alive than painted colour covering a surface” said Buren in a Press Release. “There is a quantity of mirror effects here at the Fondation that actually don’t come from mirrors but from the windows. Almost everywhere something is reflected (...) through the coloring of the sails, all those reflections will become more and more present and will awake those sleeping mirrors that are everywhere. I think that this will enable visitors to further understand and enjoy the singularity of this architecture,” continued Buren. To commemorate the installation opening, a catalogue, designed in collaboration with Buren, will amalgamate works touching on color, transparency, light, translucency, and projection all created since the 1970s. Alongside L’Observatoire de la lumière, a theatrical piece will be shown from June 2 to 4. BurenCirque: 3 times another Hut revolves around three fairground inspired huts. Again using light as a key theme, the huts will become "translucent and mysterious lanterns at night." The piece was conceived in the early 2000's by Buren working with brothers Dan and Fabien Demuynck. Children visiting the Fondation Louis Vuitton will also be able to appreciate and engage in Buren's light spectacle. Aimed at children aged six to ten, The Light Trap lets the projections and reflections of color within the building form a giant kaleidoscope. A workshop will then allow the children to explore different opacities and discover how light can alter space perception. The Light Trap will run from May 28 to August 28, every Saturday and Sunday, from 2:30–5pm.
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Q&A with design studio SOFTlab

The Architect’s Newspaper: What inspired Rise Nation? Did the client have specific ideas of what they wanted?

Michael Szivos: The client is a gym that provides an experience much like a spin class but with climbing machines. The brief was for an interesting light installation that responded to the music played during workouts. [Rise Nation] approached Lucas Werthein, a technology director and friend of ours, about the project and once they decided the best approach would be to design something that was both physical and interactive, Lucas brought us in on the project. The initial inspiration was to produce an installation that evoked a rocky surface. This is the case when the lights are on, but during workouts the room is dark and the lighting is the only thing that is visible. What was interesting for us is this contrast. The seams between the rocky surface panels provide a lighting pattern that when animated is like lightning. On the one hand, the installation appears like something solid, and on the other, it is very ephemeral. Oddly enough it is the formal overlaps between these two opposite systems that give them both their unique character. What was the most difficult aspect of the design or production process? The biggest issue was that [Rise Nation is] out in L.A. and the installation had to be put in pretty quickly. We had everything fabricated here in New York and shipped to Los Angeles, then assembled on site. The structure is made of all flat pieces of aluminum. Although it was challenging doing it across the country, it was our first permanent piece, which was really rewarding, and we have learned a lot from the project. What can we expect to see from SOFTlab in 2016? We are currently working on 3M’s experience for South by Southwest, a large installation for a lobby renovation in the Financial District in New York, and on a product booth for a lighting company that will be installed in a number of shows around the world. We also just finished an exhibition with our friends at Tellart in Dubai for the World Government Summit as well as a permanent installation in the new 21c Museum Hotel in Lexington, Kentucky. SOFTlab is doing a number of permanent installations, which is a great progression for us, and we have permanent lighting installations on the boards for a landmark building in L.A. and a flagship store in New York.
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No two walks under this responsive installation in a bridge above the High Line will ever be the same
The High Line in New York is spinning off art projects on all sides. For those seeking an immersive architectural walk, tailored to the conditions of their surroundings, a non-discrete bridge in Chelsea may be the answer. https://vimeo.com/150895684 It may be only a small-scale intervention, but a public bridge running next to the High Line now houses a scintillating display of interior lighting. During the day and from an external perspective, the bridge appears mundane, dated even, and of no particular interest. Step inside however, and the bridge comes to life. Taking responsive architecture to the extreme, the 70-by-10-foot installation called Prismatic_NYC utilizes 66 individual prisms, each individually powered by a brushless motor. Subsequently 40,000 integrated LED’s beam across the bridge in a wave-like form. Prismatic_NYC is the work of Hyphen-Labs working alongside IA Interior Architects installed an array of rotating light prisms within the structure. The light show isn’t static either. Using online weather sources, the display responds to changes in the local climate awarding each user a unique experience. A staggering amount data is accumulated to achieve this. Cloud cover, wind speed, humidity, and the accumulation or intensity of precipitation, frequency, speed, and position of the "light-wave," to name a few, go into the installation's lightscape. To amplify the experience further, the designers behind Prismatic_NYC stated that "temperature changes generate a noise function that develops the sculptures color and light behavior." And in order to be in tune with seasonal/holiday moods, a built-in calendar checks for seasons and holidays, sunrises and sunsets, tidal movements, and lunar and celestial events. In theory, no walk through the bridge should ever be the same on different occasions. As a result, the fully enclosed bridge hence connects travellers to the conditions outside while providing them with shelter. One can easily imagine hearing the rain from inside, or seeing the sun set and being exposed to the structures interpretations. "Prismatic allows us to meditate on the beauty of light, geometry, and waveforms.  Each side distinguishable from the other as they absorb, reflect, and generate light," said Hyphen-Labs on its website. "Harmonious luminescent rotations broadcast oscillating waves that spread out through the space and constantly reflecting our changing environment." "The design of the tapered prisms went through various iterations. Generative and parametric design approaches ensured the optimization of the visual experience," the designers continued. "The prisms’ physical components, fabrication, applet, website, and experience are of custom design, using the highest quality materials to ensure maximum performance for the next five years."
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Philips unveils innovative lighting system at Clemson University
In the first installation of it's kind on a college campus, Philips has unveiled a large-scale lighting project that leverages a Power over Ethernet (PoE) system combined with LED lighting to improve energy efficiency. The system, installed on Clemson University's South Carolina campus, will deliver up to 70 percent in energy savings. According to Philips, "the customized system will provide flexible work spaces that encourage collaboration between faculty and students, [and] optimize space management in the facility." The Watt Family Innovation Center gathers "historical and real-time anonymous data from each lighting fixture to determine when a room is being used." Essentially the lighting is self-monitored, and uses motion-sensors to determine how much activity is happening in a room, and light the space accordingly. Additionally, the system can be controlled entirely from a single software console and allows for remote access via any authorized smartphone or tablet. Additionally, the center also features "the largest media facade installation in the U.S. using Philips iColor Flex LMX gen2, flexible strands of large high-intensity LED nodes with intelligent color light," according to Philips, which can be used to display student news, and large graphics to display school spirit. The installation includes more than 45,000 individually controllable light points.
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On View> Luminaries at the Brookfield Place Winter Garden
Luminaries Brookfield Place Winter Garden 10:00 a.m.–8:00 p.m. 230 Vesey St., New York Through January 10, 2016 New York–based architecture and design practice Rockwell Group is lighting up New York City this holiday season with Luminaries, an interactive lighting display inside the ten-story, glass-vaulted pavilion Winter Garden Atrium at Brookfield Place New York. Designed by the LAB at Rockwell Group, the festive display features a large illuminated canopy comprised of 650 lanterns and an array of color-changing LED lights. The display is also outfitted with three interactive “wishing stations,” which trigger various lighting effects upon touch. For every wish made at Luminaries, Arts Brookfield will donate $1 up to $25,000 to the GRAMMY Foundation in an effort to fund music education programs for high school students. Inspired by the holiday traditions of sharing, community, and connection, Luminaires includes five choreographed light shows—Snowfall, Christmas Tree, Ribbons, Firecracker, and Northern Lights—that are scheduled every two hours during exhibition hours. Visit Arts Brookfield's website for more information on the exhibition.
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Aarhus Bling: James Turrell working with Schmidt Hammer Lassen to design ARoS Art Museum Expansion
While the world has been discussing how much Drake’s “Hotline Bling” music video borrowed from James Turrell’s installations (Hint: a lot*), ARoS Aarhus Art Museum in Denmark announced that the artist is collaborating with Danish architecture firm Schmidt Hammer Lassen on the museum’s new expansion. “The Next Level” expansion project will contain a 12,900-square-foot subterranean gallery and two semi-subterranean art installations, The Sphere and The Dome. Intended to “bring the museum into the elite world of modern art museums,” the extension will cost an estimated $32 million. Schmidt Hammer Lassen originally designed the space in the early 2003 and is working with the museum and the artist to retain the building’s original integrity so the expansion will feel seamless and natural. The firm also worked with Olafur Eliasson on Your Rainbow Panorama, which opened last year. “The Next Level project will develop the museum horizontally in contrast to the existing vertical movement and it is exciting to work with the great lines spanning from the river to the square of the Aarhus Music Hall. Our studio is not just designing a new room for a new artwork, we are co-creating the space and the installation simultaneously with James Turrell,” Morten Schmidt, founding partner at Schmidt Hammer Lassen said in a press release. It seems that Turrell is having quite the week. In addition to the AroS expansion, it was also reported that Yvette Lee of the Guggenheim and Whitney Museum will be the new director of the Roden Crater in Arizona (The crater’s completion date has still not been released.) Responding to Drake's video set*, Turrell had a few select words. "While I am truly flattered to learn that Drake f*cks with me," wrote Turrell in a statement from his lawyer via Vice, "I nevertheless wish to make clear that neither I nor any of my woes was involved in any way in the making of the ‘Hotline Bling' video." If you want to decide for yourself, we recommend watching the music video below and then glancing at a few installations. (If you want to go further down the bizarre rabbit hole, AN has also previously reported rumors from CityLab that “Hotline Bling” is about poor city planning.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uxpDa-c-4Mc
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UUfie Transforms Flagship Store With Icy Cool Glass Block

From Functional to Fashionable: glass blocks used to create a glowing facade in Shanghai.

Located in a high-end fashion district in Shanghai, this storefront was dramatically reclad in a custom glass block assembly by Toronto-based architecture studio UUfie. The facade is part of an adaptive reuse project, converting an old office building into a new flagship store for fashion house Ports 1961. Eiri Ota, the Director and Principal Architect of UUfie, says the design concept evokes the idea of a landform that resembles an iceberg floating freely in the ocean, “During the day, [the facade] mutes the surroundings, while subtly reflecting the sunlight. In the evening, the view is icy and crisp, and the surface illuminates with embedded LED lights integrated into the joints of the masonry.” The iceberg concept is inspired in part by the fashion brand’s celebration of the spirit of travel. The facade is composed of two types of glass blocks, a standard 12” (300mm) square block and a custom mitered block of the same dimensions. The use of corner blocks offers a seamless uninterrupted materiality. From a distance a larger grid emerges, registering the facade control joints and steel frame beyond. The grid acts as an organizing element for the building envelope, controlling the limits of the material while providing a basis for formal adjustments to the massing of the facade. At key moments, the building face pulls and pushes, establishing the main pedestrian entry and billboard displays for passersby. Ota relates these design moves to the building’s context, “the building has a sense of being undulated, expanding and contracting, as if it is shaped by its environment.”
  • Facade Manufacturer J. Gartner & Co. (HK) Ltd.
  • Architects UUfie (Design Architect)
  • Facade Installer J. Gartner & Co. (HK) Ltd.
  • Facade Consultants T/E/S/S atelier d’ingénierie (facade engineer); Inverse (lighting consultant); eightsixthree Ltd (project coordinator); Yabu Pushelberg (design producer)
  • Location Shanghai, China
  • Date of Completion 2015
  • System Glass block on steel frame assembly with integrated LED lighting
  • Products 300mm x 300mm glass block, 300mm x 300mm custom corner glass block
UUfie was able to achieve a three-dimensional “corbeling” look for the glass block by carefully integrating steel plates into the design. As the facade tapers, the blocks rest on a stainless steel plate of the same dimension, which extends to a steel frame. LED lighting, inserted into the masonry joints casts light toward the interior, which is indirectly reflected back to the exterior, establishing a soft glow effect and conveying the depth of the assembly. UUfie’s Toronto-base office worked to refine the detailing of the wall system to ensure that the on-site assembly process would operate as smoothly as possible, which meant condensing the number of connections in the modular assembly down to a set of standard details. This effort doubly helped to establish a rigorously refined aesthetic and efficient construction process, reflecting Ports 1961’s approach to carefully honed craft production. The finishes selected for the facade were a thoughtful addition to the project. The glass block is a satin finish, and the underside of the exposed steel plates is shot blasted to create a soft matte finish. These deliberately “soft” finishes operate contextually to contrast with Shanghai’s electric chaos. Ota attributes the success of the project to the facade’s materiality and formal massing: “The differing geometries and changing perspectives of the facade express the transformative nature of the city and the people of Shanghai.”