14. Aug 2015

No. 98 –Dynamic interpretations

Jul/Aug 2015

Flower power
Light Garden – a modern dynamic meadow of flowers
Text: Joachim Ritter
Flower power was a term and a movement that came into being in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Flowers were a symbol of passive resistance and non-violence, and worn by the so-called hippie generation as a peaceful demonstration against imperialism, and in particular against the war in Vietnam. People tend to give flowers to friends for birthdays, weddings and even funerals, and some believe that different types of flowers have meanings. What power do flowers really have? Can they really make us happier …? The appeal of the flowers in the Plaza Norte shopping centre in Lima is at any rate definitely infectious.

Enjoy the breeze
Media façade design on the Mondeal Square
building in Ahmedabad, Gujarat/IND
Text: Joachim Ritter
Globally speaking, Ahmedabad is not necessarily known as the hub of the modern world. And even the most well versed historians among us will not immediately know that Ahmedabad was the place where Mahatma Gandhi lived after his time in South Africa and from where he embarked on his legendary Salt March, a non-violent protest against the British salt monopoly in colonial India. Right now, the city is on the brink of a new era, which also means turning a page when it comes to architecture and technology. A typical case for a media facade. And yet this example demonstrates a very special quality.

Well, well
Interactive Light Well installation in the main square in Lahti/FIN
Text: Joachim Ritter
Market places have always been the focus of activity in towns and therefore play a central role in the urban layout. This is where much of the dynamic social life of the town takes place. People meet here to trade, or to share information and opinions. Market squares are often used for local political activities. With the advent of mail order trading and the growing number of shopping malls being built outside our city centres, central town squares need new attractions to inspire citizens to use them. Dynamic interactive lighting installations are an effective and modern way of addressing this need.

Functional light art
The “Dolmen Light” light art installation in the Hondsrug Tunnel in Emmen/NL
Text: Joachim Ritter
Here we go again: “Why do we need this?” the older ones among us will ask, and “We never needed this sort of thing in the past!” Really? Haven’t we actually always needed it, but have never realised it for lack of knowledge or technical means?

The fine line
…between enhancing and manipulating through designed/dynamic light
Text: Joachim Ritter, Christopher Cuttle, Regina Lausell,
Deborah Burnett, Heinrich Kramer
Modern lighting design is not becoming any easier, but rather more complex. To be exact, light has always been complex, but now we know what advantages good light can bring us human beings…or even what damage light can do…or what opportunities it offers for manipulation! To date we have only really focussed on light as a means for enhancing mood or atmosphere. Now we know that specific light applied in classrooms and at the workplace has been found to promote concentration and productivity, and in commercial scenarios it can even “seduce” us into spending money. Is it possible to use light to undermine free will? How far can we pursue this idea before we overstep the mark? Or does this kind of attitude only stem from phantasising pessimists and people who spend the majority of their time finding fault? Read the following five standpoints.

The dim
Text: Michael Hawkins
Throughout history about half of a human’s life was spent in low light levels, but today we rarely experience dimness because our nights are flooded with electric light. These nights of the past were fraught with perils; however, they were also a time of socializing. Our eyes have evolved to be able to adapt to dimness and there is research suggesting that we may be healthier for it.

Biophilic lighting design
A natural choice
Text: Ioannis Ladopoulos
The word “biophilia” is derived from the Ancient Greek words βίος (“life”) and φῐλίᾱ (“love, friendship”) and can therefore be loosely translated as the “love of life”. When we do not feel well we seek nature to help us relax or to invigorate our minds and bodies. Nature has always been our sanctuary, and we are continually witness to the many demonstrations of its magnitude and glory.

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