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Posted in Education
28/06 2008

The colour as a guide

the colour as a guide
Arch. Giordana Arcesilai

Today technology allows us to apply every colour combination to our lighting projects and the last Light & Building in Frankfurt confirmed this; intensive and power LED, LED on flexible strips, large beam LED in order to use backlighting in an uniform way, so it is possible to say that this kind of LED are easy to find, so this determines a difficult choice for the designers.
LED are becoming cheaper, but the lighting designers’ task is not to forget the aim of his project, the first concept, and not to be induced by an easy applicable technology; he has to pay attention not to alter the original project.
I’ve always felt as a delicate problem the application of colour in light, since when LED have begun to be used outdoor, and many show producers have modified their lighting equipments for the architectural installations.
My questions about the use of coloured light as a lighting designer, lead me to make some hypotheses about its application fields.

• To add meanings to modern architecture
• To characterize some part of an architecture
• To light infrastructures (bridges etc.)
• In modern architecture for public use (stations etc.)
• For suburbs riqualification
• In industrial archeology
• In ruins (fascination increase, suggestion)
• For particula events

It’s clear that light has the important task to “shift the attention”.
In presence of white light the only way to contrast, to attract is to use colour, it would be unsuccessful to superimpose white light over white light; and all this is in harmony with the current energy saving objective.

An application, this square inside a school complex, where light is soft and suggestive, made of contrasts, of light and shadow zones, and it’s well integrated in the day architectural context.
The blue colour is a guide and the linear LED profiles integrated in the floor and in the walls will light the future children paintings; moreover light has an important role on the coloured walls that are the background of the square. The aim was a light system in syntony with architecture with no superimposition but integration, and during the day the only visible lighting fixtures are pillars that mark the coloured grid of the floor.

Even in this private flat a blue coloured guide is present , with minimal power consumption to make a sort of functional pathway.
The human eye, from a dark situation to a light one, needs time to adapt, and its first reaction is a sort of pain; when at night we wake up and need to reach the functional rooms of the house, to guarantee a good visual comfort, it’s a good choice to create a low luminance pathway.
LED, especially of blue colour, is very relaxing, is the most appropriate lighting source because it has minimum consumption but it is efficient, and long lasting.

From these concepts derives the idea of a steps’ sign in outdoor, Pollicino; you have only to put it on the floor without setting it and it can be moved; it represents an ideal lighting guide also for already made flooring, from this point of view it is innovative. My aim was to reproduce the candle wax effect to indicate, a technology candle, a poetic use of LED; in the meantime this object emphasizes trees, sculptures, architectures producing a lighting accent; it’s waterproof, it is born for outdoor installation but it’s a good company even for our sleep, or to create night reference points inside the house, playing with white, blue, and even the warm yellow.



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