Mumbai, 2nd February 2011
Lighting suppliers are a critical part in our lighting design chain of processes. We conceptualise, we detail, we select and specify the lights and need to approve the manufacturer/ supplier that will have to deliver the lights to the projects for installation. While we generally know the principals in the head offices of the main lighting manufacturers around the world, it is the local supplier on the ground that will determine the success of the final installation. Lighting supply is not just lighting supply, it comes with the responsibility of making sure the light fitting is properly delivered (complete with all the bells and whistles) installed and working.
This requires the supplier to be knowledgeable about their products first but most of all have the experience of the many challenges that may occur during supply and installation. I therefore make it a point to communicate and meet with my project suppliers to make sure they are on the ball when it matters. You can have the best product in the world but if the human factor is not there to support it I find it hard to specify and use the fitting. As a designer I need to be able to rely on my supplier to make sure things end up as good as possible. Mistakes and problems always occur along the way so full cooperation of the supplier is critical to the end result.
With the market in India booming, the standard and quality of the local lighting suppliers has raised considerably compared to several years ago. I like to think that the influence of international consultants like myself is helping to raise their profile even further. I have noticed that the quality of the lighting showrooms also has improved enormously over the years.
In Light Watch today a sort of must visit place made famous by the book Shantaram, called the Leopold Café, not far away from the Taj Hotel and India Gate. The café was made famous by the book and his a hang out place for tourist nowadays. It was also one of the places hit by terrorists in 2009 and when you are there you can still see the bullet holes. Lighting is really nothing, very basic, but it still has a lot of ambiance
Light Watch 23: Leopold Café & Bar, Mumbai