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Ecology of Light Workshop

Lighting Design Workshop | Sau-Paulo, Brazil August 2018

A partnership in between AsBAI, Brazilian Association of Lighting Architects, and LEDforum, the major lighting design conference in Brazil, has developed a series of annual workshops regarding lighting in urban contexts, with a growing complexity from year to year.

In 2018, it was time to go in-depth in understanding the social and environmental impacts of light from a multidisciplinary perspective. To address such complexity, we´ve combined international experience with local expertise elaborating an innovative and tailor-made working methodology.

The Methodology comes from a simple principle. Street lighting is contained within three main realms: SPACE, PEOPLE and LIGHT. Each of these components contains a rich world within itself. The method fundamentally connects these three components, examines the overlap between them, and presents the possibility of reaching a complex situation in which each one of the components is expressed in high accordance with the others. Much thought has been dedicated to the order of action in the method, the elements at each stage, and what is the best order in different uses. Link to the full methodology

The importance of in-depth understanding of the site is very valuable and is what makes a solution complete and consistent. The more the site analysis includes complex relationships between various issues, the foundation for the problems is clearer and the solution approach becomes more appropriate. For every problem that appears, its basic components are known in a way that the solution is stronger.

The Outcome has been one master plan that regards three different scales of the area and three temporary lighting installations created from scratch by workshop participants. Both aligned with the central theme: ECOLOGY OF LIGHT

It took us 16 months to develop a methodology to fit this new context and to become a realistic four-day workshop in Vila Jataí, an eco-neighborhood in São Paulo with an active community network. Thanks to the interaction with local agents, before and during the workshop, we gathered comprehensive information about the context, which was crucial for a holistic understanding on the place.

We divided the participants in 6 groups and they put together enormous amount of information regarding HUMANS, SPACE and LIGHT as well as the interaction in between them. Processing all data in a structured way, a concept was born: EMBRACING ROOTS

Roots representing the river flow under pavement, nature, stability, community network, capacity working together to reinforce a sense of belonging.

Hug welcoming, accepting, comforting, taking care, providing a feeling of safety and understanding.

After creating a collective concept, the different groups kept on developing it: Three groups working on the master plan regarding neighborhood, street and square scales. Meanwhile interventions were developed for node, landscape and transition typologies.

A single concept unfolded into six different expressions, that complement each other and together give a broad, complete and meaningful proposal.

On the last evening of the workshop during installation opening night, a projection showing the master plan invited people to discuss the results and the process.


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