National (Lighting) Day?
Singapore, 10th August 2012
Did not get to write on Wednesday and yesterday, which was Singapore’s National Day. “Social obligations” kept me busy elsewhere and in between I was not in a mood (nor state) to write something meaningful…Travelling around and having several “homes” I am exposed to quite a number of National Day celebrations. As it happened I was for once not travelling and actually able to enjoy the public holiday that comes along with a country’s national day. I was fortunate to attend a party on one of Marina Bay’s rooftop venues with a splendid view on the Bay and the inevitable fireworks.
There is a “Day” for nearly everything it seems, but is there a national or better still, a World Lighting Day? Yes, we have Earth Hour, which is actually more a world NON lighting day, but any other? After some Googling I found a world Candle Lighting Day, which seems to be a remembrance day for children who have died at any age from any cause. The closest I found was a GE initiative to celebrate Thomas Edison’s invention of the commercial light bulb on the 21st October, called World Lighting Appreciation Day. Not sure whether it is a recurrent event or whether it was a one-off. GE introduced it in 2010 in conjunction with some LED product announcement.
Should we have such day? It is without a doubt that today’s world without lighting would be quite different to say the least, with many things not possible now common and taken for granted in our daily life. So an appreciation and ode to lighting may be appropriate. At the same time we also need to take into consideration that lighting does eat up a lot of our fossil energy. So while on one hand we should be grateful and pay homage to lighting (my job would not exist if not for the invention of lighting!) we do have to stand still on the impact that lighting has on our environment. It’s a delicate balance. Lighting really enriches our lives in so many ways, but it comes with a responsibility which is to consider our environment and the planet we live on at the same time! Luckily that is why there are professional lighting designers, nowadays. Walking this fine line is (should!) be part of our vision and mission.
Light Watch 3-120: Last night’s Singapore National Day views of Marina Bay. Pictures taken with my Iphone…:)