The week that was 29th Aug – 2nd September
Singapore – Xitang – Shanghai – Singapore, Weekend 3-4 September 2016
After morning meetings with my team in Singapore on Monday I got on my flight to Shanghai to meet my client in Xitang for our big concept presentation. We had worked long and hard on it to make sure we delivered a great start to the project on our Tuesday project meeting, specially organised for us. But the week really belonged to the Shanghai International Lighting Fair that started on Wednesday. After months of preparations, the fair, with our Lighting Design Agora concept, finally kicked off. Not surprisingly I am dedicating this blog to the event.
SILF – Lighting Design Agora: Day 1- Wednesday
Thanks to the volunteer work from CLDA and IAC members, Messe Frankfurt HK and our sponsors, who had all worked till late on Tuesday, the 180m2 booth was looking great and all ready to go. The concept of the Lighting Design Agora is a central design and speaker’s arena where leading lighting experts share their knowledge and experience in lighting design to the audience surrounded by international quality manufacturers relevant to the chosen theme of the booth; “Art and Lighting Design”. IGuzzini, Creative Lighting Asia and Lumascape, Xicato, Technolite and WEEF and Led Linear occupied the booths around our arena giving the overall stand an intimate “happening” feel. The moment the proceedings started the stand filled up and throughout the speaker’s presentations there was hardly any seat unoccupied with many standing in the wings or visiting our sponsor’s booths alongside the arena.
CLDA’s president Lear Hsieh, opened the proceedings with an introduction to the Lighting Design Agora concept and what we hope to achieve now and in the future. First up was Herbert Cybulska, the IAC’s chairman introducing the audience to his intriguing “Bonne Nuit at St Bonifacio” lighting project, followed by James Wallace, IAC’s CEO with his expose about light and shadow going through history from Renaissance to Rodin. The afternoon was filled with great presentations from Freddie Lim, IGuzzini’s Luca Tarsetti with his insights on the lighting of the Leonardo Da Vinci’s Last Supper with Gorana Saulna closing out the day with her presentation on Lunarscape’s new lighting systems for the Sydney Opera House which had the audience on the edge of their seats.
Speakers, sponsors and CLDA members joined in the evening for a welcome dinner hosted by the organisers in celebration of this first big step in bringing the benefits of better quality lighting design in China to greater public acceptance. We all looked back on a great and very satisfactory first day.
SILF – Lighting Design Agora: Day 2 – Thursday
Day 2 started busier than the first with even more people coming into the stand. In appreciation of all the organisational efforts to make this event a success Herbert, James and myself were recognised and thanked officially in a little ceremony. While it is nice to be appreciated and recognised for your work, it is of course only possible by the tremendous efforts of everyone involved. After the ceremony I kicked off the morning session with my presentation about the “Challenges of Lighting Public Artworks”, followed by Emrah Baki Ulas’ “Casting a new light on Art”. Amardeep closed out the morning looking at lighting design from a poetic angle. The presentations elicited a much more engaged audience with questions, a clear sign of the interest generated by the speakers and their presented topics.
The afternoon sessions saw Paul Ehlert share his inspirations in lighting public art spaces, followed by Roger Sexton with the hot topic of smart lighting in galleries based on test project at the Van Gogh museum in Amsterdam. In the discussion that followed the role of the lighting designer was debated specifically in regards to the impact of smart lighting systems and the lighting designer’s relevance in taking the lead in determining the ultimate lighting design. Stefan Bittner closed out the two days of high quality presentations sharing with the audience how LED Linear is taking on the new internet era.
Before adjourning for drinks and dinner the IAC, the CLDA and the participating sponsors met for a debrief on the event and how we can further improve the event the next time. Earlier meetings with Messe Frankfurt HK had already provided us with a very happy feedback and the promise for a bigger and better stand for our next target event. Having road tested our Lighting Design Agora with great success and satisfaction, we now confidently look forward to the next one. Thanks again to all that helped make this a reality!
While I am writing this blog already on my way back to Singapore, the CLDA is holding its Pecha Kutch style presentation where 10 lighting designer members of the CLDA are presenting lighting design subjects in a short burst of 10 mins, 20 slides presentations. Day 3 is a Chinese affair which will allow the local designers to profile themselves to the general public. If the last two days were anything to go by, this last day will have been certainly as successful.
See impressions of the event below…
Enjoy your weekend…
(PS: Later next week I am off on my month long leave…see you back in October!)