“Vorsprung durch technik”
Berlin, Sunday 1st Novemeber 2009
On my last day in Germany it is probably fitting to use this well known slogan, used by German carmaker Audi in their advertisements. It loosely translates as “being ahead through (or because of)technology”. We had the PLDC gala dinner last night at the old Berlin Convention Hall and it struck me how modern lighting technology was introduced in the old building space, which looked to be a great heritage example of the past glory of German architecture. The big and majestic space with its period light fittings was enhanced with modern LED technology and sophisticated multi media to create the ambiance for the night. Modern lighting technology definitely gives us many advantages as compared to the conventional way of lighting things.
It is however important to reflect on the challenge, and possibly even the need, of integrating modern lighting technology into older (or even heritage) building environments. Besides the fact that we may not be able install and integrate the new lighting systems into the existing building fabric, the challenge really is on finding a balanced way of marrying the benefits of the new technology within the old building environment…assuming the merits of doing so make sense.