arc December/January 2017/18 - Issue 101

Page 138

The Perfect Light


t is said that all good documentaries start with a

question. We are not saying that we have made a good

documentary but we have definitely asked a question… The historical development of light and lighting has

always been about the search for the ‘Perfect’ Light. With each

new light source development trying to better the one before in terms of efficiency, size or usability, and occasionally in quality

(halophosphor to triphosphor in fluorescent technology and quartz

At the start of this year, Light Collective set off on a mission to find the Perfect Light and on the way to capture the thoughts and characters of leading lighting designers around the globe. Supported by Citizen, the end product is a non-project specific narrative that voices the thoughts of 22 of the world’s leading lighting designers at a unique time in the development of light and lighting.

to ceramic in metal halide for example). The current state of the art in terms of lighting technology, however, means that most

designers currently specify almost 100% LED on their projects. We wanted to question the almost ubiquitous use of LEDs

in current lighting design and specification. We wanted to question why LEDs have superseded all other sources and

potentially rendered them obsolete, unlike any light source

development before. We wanted to ask, therefore, is LED the

Perfect Light? Are we in the middle of the greatest revolution since the invention of Swan’s (or Edison’s) light bulb?

Our documentary asked lighting designers around the globe

for their thoughts, memories and opinions on light sources,

lighting design and how they would define the Perfect Light.

In order to do this we were lucky to be able to enlist the support of Citizen, a company who has been making LEDs for 20 years. They

supported the project with a view to introducing themselves to the

lighting industry having realised that for many years they have been manufacturing LEDs based on increasing efficiency and decreasing

cost. They realised that these should not be the only factors by which LED is developed and our idea for a critical appraisal of the use of LED aligned well with this realisation. By meeting, and listening