Oct 012010

Every year, cities across the world participate in an arts festival called Nuit Blanche.  For one night, museums, galleries, and city halls are open and free to the public.  Entire blocks are turned into performance spaces and artwork displays cover the streets.

This year, New York is hosting its first-ever Nuit Blanche event.  New York has named their Nuit Blanche event “Bring to Light,” and the event will especially celebrate “the magic and luminance of light.”

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 Posted by on October 1, 2010 at 10:06 am
Sep 292010

Winners of the 2010 Light & Architecture Design Awards were officially announced in the most recent issue of Architectural Lighting.

There were a number of amazing designs, but I wanted to share my favorite: the W Hotel Ft. Lauderdale, which received Outstanding Achievement, Whole Building. Lighting designers from Washington, D.C.-based MCLA collaborated with Adache Group Architects on the project.

“Flying” candle fixtures above the fountain accentuate the low ambient light levels at the entrance of the hotel.

Flexible LED fixtures are mounted on the ceiling and walls of a pool table lounge. Through the perforated corten panels, light shines through.

Through the stair enclosure in the center of the pool, guests can walk back down into the lobby. This is the only feature illuminated at night, ensuring protection of the sea turtles.

The Whiskey Blue bar at the hotel features brass tubes suspended from the ceiling with blue LEDs.

According to Scott Guenther, senior designer at MCLA, “The lighting design was intended to enhance the relaxing beach environment and provide guests with a few unique, playful moments – both indoors and out.”

What do you think – did they succeed?

 Posted by on September 29, 2010 at 3:05 pm
Sep 132010

Last weekend, the night sky was illuminated in New York by two twin beams of light shining upward from Lower Manhattan.

The 9/11 “Tribute in Light” memorial is in its ninth year.  The rays, which are made up of more than 40 xenon light bulbs, are the strongest shafts of light ever projected from Earth into the night sky.  Each year, they evoke the shape of the Twin Towers beginning at dusk on September 11 and fading with the dawn on September 12.  Each year, they honor the victims of the terrorist attacks of 2001 and illuminate the sky as a silent, symbolic tribute.

The Municipal Art Society sponsors the display each year.  For more information, see the New York Times article.

 Posted by on September 13, 2010 at 10:06 am
Sep 072010

It’s impossible to show off the full effect of a piece of artwork without proper lighting. If a framed painting or photograph is ensconced in shadows, it will appear dull and flat. Why buy an expensive piece of artwork without displaying it in the best light?

Whether you’re a designer, contractor, or homeowner, adding picture lights to emphasize the details and color in wall art will enhance the ambiance of any room.
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 Posted by on September 7, 2010 at 2:14 pm
Aug 272010

The Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) Illumination Awards are in for 2010, and the lighting designs are truly magnificent.  Here is a selection of photos from the winning lighting designs (feel free to comment below on which is your favorite!):

Lightcatcher Museum: The Paul Waterbury Award for Outdoor Lighting Design

Izunome Tokyo: The Edwin F. Guth Memorial Award for Interior Lighting Design

 Posted by on August 27, 2010 at 10:15 am
Aug 242010

The Industrial Designers Society of America recently published winners of the 2010 International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA).  One of the student submissions caught my eye:

The design, called “Write?  Light!” is a portable bedside lamp, and it’s for those  tossers and turners who suddenly remember an important to-do, or who come up with a brilliant idea for a new project in the middle of the night.

The lamp turns on when you pick up the pencil so you can quickly jot down a note, and it turns off again when you replace the pencil.  It strikes me as such an intuitive product design – what do you think?

Aug 192010

Cafe Zoetrope, lighting from street level

Ever since I started blogging for Pegasus Lighting, I’ve been paying attention to the lighting wherever I go: restaurants, museums, hotels, friends’ houses, you name it.  If you try this experiment for a couple of days, it won’t take long for you to realize that lighting design completely makes or breaks an atmosphere.

I was recently in San Francisco and admiring the lighting at one of the many amazing restaurants I went to, Café Zoetrope.  The café is in the lobby of the historic Sentinel building, owned by Francis Ford Coppola.  First of all, the exterior is absolutely gorgeous.  The copper-green building is at the corner of the street in the North Beach region.  By day, its architecture certainly stands out.  But by night…

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 Posted by on August 19, 2010 at 10:00 am
Jun 152010

It’s not often that a new product or trend represents a true win-win for both consumers and businesses, but this is one of those rare occasions.

LED lighting in refrigerated display cases is quickly being adopted by food retail stores across the globe. It’s more direct, uniform, and bright lighting than the old fluorescents, making it more attractive for consumers. It slashes energy and maintenance costs, making it more affordable for retailers.

With a steady rise in electricity costs in an industry where profit margins are relatively low, food retail stores are quickly adopting a technology that proves to substantially reduce operational costs. Utility rebates have also made the product more attractive to retailers.

It’s certainly no small change. By installing LED lighting in refrigerated glass door displays, stores can cut energy consumption by up to 60 percent. Fluorescent lighting emits much more heat than LED lighting and as a result operates best at 60-80 degrees Fahrenheit. In a refrigerated environment, fluorescent light output drops and more energy is expended to keep the case cold.

This year, BJ’s Wholesale Club will install LED lighting in its refrigerated display cases at 68 of its locations.

Apr 012010

1.  Set a budget.  Think about what you can afford and don’t forget to account for costs of labor if you end up having to hire an electrician.

2.  Find out what your current circuit in the kitchen can handle.  In order to do this, multiply the amps by the volts.  Most circuits have 120 volts.  So if your circuit was 15 amps, you’d multiply 15×120.  That amounts to 1800 – the total number of watts your kitchen circuit can handle.  It’s a good rule of thumb to use your circuit up to 80 percent of its capacity.

3.  Consider the condition of your current wiring.  If you’re in an older home, you might consider rewiring the room (this is where you should contact an electrician if you don’t have experience).

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