Corporate lighting

Architectural lighting for brand communication

In a period where companies and their products have become more indistinguishable, corporate identity is not solely restricted to graphic design any longer, but aspects such as architectural lighting have started to play an increasingly important role. The dissertation therefore, detects lighting methods and techniques for corporate architecture. The research examines lighting history, design processes, as well as lighting solutions and their suitability for different corporate design concepts. The investigated projects range from retail, company headquarters and gastronomy to hotels and urban lighting master plans. They are analysed for their subtle or expressive use of modern light sources, luminaire designs and lighting concepts.

Doctoral thesis presentation:
Slideshare: Corporate lighting

Online access to complete doctoral thesis:
Corporate lighting. PDF file

Selected Publications:
– Influence of lighting design on marketing communication.
Leukos. 2015 Vol 11, 3. Article
– The language of lighting: Applying semiotics in the evaluation of lighting design. Leukos. 2019. Vol 15, 2-3. Article open access
– Impact of lighting design on brand image for fashion retail stores. Lighting Research and Technology.   2014 July. Article
– Validity of simulation for lighting and brand image evaluation. Lighting Research and Technology. 2015  Article
– Light and corporate identity: Using lighting for corporate communication. Lighting Research and   Technology. 2010 Sep, 42 (3). Article
– Leuchtende Marken. archithese. No. 3. Zürich,   Switzerland, 2008. (german)

Selected conferences:
– Enlighten Europe. Berlin, 9.-11.11.2014
– IES Annual Conference, Huntington Beach/CA   USA, 26.-29.2013 
– Experiencing Light. Eindhoven/NL, 12.-13.11.2012
– Enlighten Europe Conference. London, 4.-5.2.2009
– Experiencing Light. Eindhoven/NL, 26.-27.10.2009

The semiotics of media facades

When buildings start to twitter

The study depicts international media facdes with their different artistic, social or brand messages up to interfaces like iPhone or brain sensors for public participation. In the last decade, media facades have become a widespread element for luminous tweets. They establish a network between the building owner and the citizens, sometimes driven by aesthetical debates, other times by commercial intentions. Media facades with their strong ambition for an impressive imagery have dissolved the difference between architectural lighting and graphic design.

Harvard Graduate School of Design. Cambridge, 5.3.2012
Parsons The New School for Design. New York, 21.10.2010

Luminous walls

From stained glass windows via modernist wallwashing to pixelated planes

Luminous walls belong to the essential repertoire of qualitative lighting design. The analysis reveals different lighting approaches: From backlit stained glass windows for spiritual enlightenment in the gothic period to modernist uniform wallwashing. Contemporary examples open the view for pixelated colour changing planes based on LED technology.

Professional Lighting Design Convention. Madrid, 19.-22.10.2011
Columbia University. New York, 26.10.2010

The aesthetic of luminous ceilings

From the image of heaven to dynamic light

Luminous ceilings provide spacious room impressions and can provide different types of lighting. Besides this, they are, however, also metaphors of the natural sky and a mirror of an aesthetic and architectural debate. The historical observation of ceilings reveals that the image of heaven, which reached a theological culmination in the luminous Renaissance stucco techniques, turned into large-scale light emanating surfaces. Even if the luminance of contemporary LED screens has increased intensely and thereby creates a point of attraction, designers still look to establish a pictorial language for an impressive appearance.

Professional Lighting Design Convention. Berlin, 29.-31.10.2009


Architectural lighting images – The influence of visualisation techniques on lighting design

Images of light are a medium for designers to evoke inspiration, to evaluate concepts and to visualise ideas. Within the design process, images are transformed into material, or an abstract language of signs is converted into lighting objects. Architecture and lighting design are always preceded by graphic design processes. Various designers reveal their dialectic through individual images: Erich Mendelsohn with sketches, Ben van Berkel with data visualisations and Frank Gehry with cardboard models in combination with a 3D scanner followed by computer aided manufacturing. The question hereby arises whether their techniques and their design results can be understood as a response to image techniques of their time? How does digital image production influence architectural lighting design today?

Professional Lighting Design Convention. London, 25.-27.10.2007
ERCO Lichtbericht Edition 86.

Lighting design for elevators

Illuminating vertical transition spaces

Elevator technology has been perfected to such an extent that a ride in a lift has virtually no tangible side-effects. The elevator cabins, or cars, have become more compact to fit more effectively into buildings, but lighting can contribute towards rendering the dynamic quality of an elevator system more legible and enhancing the quality of the compact space as well as achieving more comfort for users.

Professional Lighting Design. Nov/Dec 2007

Lighting design for stadiums

Iconographic power of stadium lighting

Stadium lighting focuses mainly on the functional and compatible media aspects of the field. In new stadium buildings, architectural lighting comes to the fore to achieve a greater aesthetic quality. The illumination of stadiums contributes considerably to the perception of architecture. Concise lighting architecture for night-time displays effective media images that evoke strong emotions in visitors and TV viewers even before accessing the stadium. The international planned and realised projects illustrate how the perception of stadiums as structures, shifts to stadiums as images. The urban and building design analysis leads to discussions about the influence of such lighting concepts for other building types and the role of light as an ornament. Architects and lighting designers integrate dynamic illumination and coloured light sources like LEDs, to connect a multiplicity of luminaires in order to realise monumental images for urban spaces.

– Stadia Design & Technology. Warsaw, 21.-22.4.2009.
– International Congress for the Design, Construction, Modernization and Management of Sports and Leisure Facilities. Cologne, 31.10.-2.10.2007

– Lighting Today. Volume 1. 2006
– Professional Lighting Design. No. 48. 2006 Stadia. Issue 39. 2006

Luminaire innovations towards LED light boards

Task lights and spotlights

The first decade with white LED light reveals how designers have implemented new technology in existing housing, added LED as part of a product group or created a unique design specifically for LED. The focus on task lights and spotlights vividly shows the dialogue between form and technology. The analysis includes international designers and architects like Norman Foster or Yves Behar.