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GLOW/SHIFTboston Copley Square Competition
May 22nd, 2012

Competition Finalist

Location: Boston

KLF Principals in Charge: R. el-Khoury and R. Levit

Associate in Charge: Lindsay Hochman

Team: Roya Mottahedeh

Copley Square is an urban room, and hanging in the middle of it is a great chandelier. Dewdrop-shaped globes hang from a funicular mesh support, each illuminated by a wick-like row of low-energy addressable LEDs. Each light fixture weights the stainless-steel cable mesh from which it hangs like thes and bags of Gaudi’s hanging chain models. Here, though, it is light which is given weight and pulls down upon its supports to produce an inverted dome of scintillating light. Through the middle, the oculus at the centre, the unobstructed sky is visible again.

Lighting is distributed throughout the square, providing local area lighting by , creating luminousrooms under the allées of trees flanking the north and south edges of the square with up-lighting , andilluminating each of the surrounding buildings with dedicated fixtures. All these lights are unobtrusiveand coordinated in their color and intensity with the central chandelier. Thus, if the chandelier flickers,or changes color so do all the lights of the square. The impression is that all light is emanating from thechandelier; the energy-efficient reality is that strategically distributed light sources are doing the workfrom their optimal proximity to surfaces and objects.

Sensors are placed throughout the square that permit lighting to be made responsive to movement andactivity in the square. All lights are linked to digital controls that permit curated design of lighting effectand patterns as well as public participation in the creation of such effects.

Power for the chandelier and all the square’s lights and power needs are provided through four verticalwind turbines that are mounted atop each of the four masts used to support the funicular mesh of thechandelier. Generated power is stored in batteries at the foot of each mast, while the visibility of theturbines makes for a rhetoric linking the illumination of the square to a visible energy source that isintegral to the design of the perceived light source.