Bodies of Light
Friday, 16 March 2012

An event in the ANCB - Zumtobel Research: The City Lights Project

Bodies of Light is the first of four events within the ANCB Zumtobel Research entitled The City Lights Project. It seeks to explore current directions and future requirements regarding the city's light, while asking for the instruments to answer these - ideas that can engage directly in the transformative process of the built environment. It introduces two positions, from the fields of architecture and photography, by:

Peter Bialobrzeski, Photographer, Hamburg
Jan and Tim Edler, Architects, Directors realities:united, Berlin

After presenting their work, Dietmar Leyk, ANCB, will open a conversation revolving around the interdependency between the critical making of the city on one hand and the careful observing of the contemporary city on the other. Both the kinetic projects by realities:united, such as the communicative display skin for the Kunsthaus Graz, and Peter Bialobrzeski's unique series of photographs about the development of Asian mega-cities (Neon Tigers, Lost in Transition) and their slums (Case Study Homes) challenge the creation of relevant concepts for artificial light.

The City Lights Project: ANCB Zumtobel Research
Lighting is essential to a modern society. Lights have revolutionized the way we live and work. But basic expectations and requirements of the urban population have changed dramatically over the last 50 years. What does it mean to illuminate the city and its architecture today? Security, orientation and light pollution are only a few issues among many others which require new ideas for the use of artificial light. New technologies and shifts in values allow for a rethinking of urban lighting. This inquiry uncovers contemporary international projects relevant for the improvement of the future city. Included are not only lighting master plans (plans lumières) for the city in a larger scale, but also small projects, public and private, with innovative potential for taking city lights into the future.

Peter Bialobrzeski studied Politics and Sociology before he became a photographer for a local paper in his native Wolfsburg/Germany. He travelled extensivly in Asia before he went back to study photography at the Folkwangschule in Essen and the LCP in London. After having worked as a photographer for almost 15 years and published world wide, Peter started to focus more on Personal Projects. In the last eight years he has published eight books. His work has been exhibited in Europe, USA, Asia, Afrika and Australia. He won several awards including the prestigious World Press Photo Award 2003 and 2010. Since 2002 Peter is a regular Professor for photography at the University of the Arts in Bremen/Germany. Furthermore he runs workshops around the world. He is represented by Laurence Miller Gallery in New York, LA Galerie in Frankfurt/Germany and also shows with Robert Morat Gallery in his hometown Hamburg, as well as at m97 Gallery in Shanghai. In 2012 he was honored with the Erich Salomon Award by the German Society of Photographers (DGPh).

Tim Edler & Jan Edler. In 2000 the brothers Tim Edler and Jan Edler founded realities:united (realU), a studio for art, architecture and technology. realities:united develops and supports architectural solutions, usually incorporating new media and information technologies. The office provides consulting, planning, and research, also undertaking projects for clients such as museums, businesses, and other architectural firms. Strategic initiative and a high proportion of communication and mediation in work processes mark many of the firm’s innovative projects. This approach creates the bridge between utopian ideas, abstract conceptions and realizations and has been recognized internationally. The Edlers have won several international design awards and competitions. For the development of the BIX communicative display skin at the Kunsthaus Graz the brothers received the the Hans Schaefers Award by the German Architects Association Berlin (2004); among others. In 2007 the brothers were honoured with the silver award by the German Art Director Club for the design of MuseumX in Mönchengladbach, and in 2009 their work was honoured with the prestigious Kunstpreis Berlin 2009 by the Akademie der Künste in Berlin. In 2010 the BIX project was included in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York.

Dietmar Leyk, together with Petra Wollenberg, is director of lwa leyk wollenberg architects based in Berlin, accomplishing international projects in all scales from interior to urban design since 2000. They received numerous prizes in international competitions and for their realized work; one of them is the first prize for their project in the international competition for the Lecture Hall and Media Centre for the Technical University in Darmstadt/Germany in 2010. Dietmar Leyk taught as Interim Professor for Architecture and Urban Design from 2002-2003 at the ETH Zürich. Before he taught and researched as assistant professor at the ETH Zürich from 1996-2002 on a variety of issues concerned with the architectural and urban form. He published “ParaForm”, a research on urban morphological phenomena. From 2005 until today he is a Visiting Professor at the Berlage Institute Rotterdam. Dietmar Leyk teaches, publishes and lectures internationally. In 2010 he published "Working and Living in the City of Knowledge". Since 2011 he is a member of the Director's Team for Aedes Network Campus Berlin - The Metropolitan Laboratory.

We would like to thank Zumtobel for their generous support.

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