WHERE THE MAGIC HAPPENS
It’s at once strange and exhilarating to return to Lighting magazine after a gap of five years.
The magazine you’re holding has an unparalleled pedigree – it’s been reporting on lighting
matters since its launch in 1969. It has survived because it has evolved, and changed with
the times. The lighting business is almost unrecognisable to the one I joined back in 1995
– and, as we all know, the revolution is only just getting going.
And it’s not just LEDs that are reshaping the industry. What’s more significant, to my mind,
is that client, architects, consulting engineers and other building professionals are starting
to appreciate the power of lighting to transform a space. They’re being bolder and more
confident with light, and are happy to work with lighting designers and suppliers to get the
look they want.
I hope this, the next iteration of Lighting magazine, will reflect this new confidence. We will
show the techniques and the trends, the ideas and the inspiration to create lit environments
that match the buildings they live in.
We hope to provide education and insight, and put the use of electric lighting in its
historical context, explore the philosophy of lighting design and inspire with creative ideas
I see Lighting magazine as a crossover publication: an architectural magazine about light.
Uniquely, it will cover in some depth both natural and electric lighting, because it’s the
integration of these two into architecture where the magic really happens.
I also hope that in a small way, this publication will help close the gap between the
architecture and the lighting professions. I believe it’s a false divide – and a damaging one.
It’s also relatively recent in our culture. Architects once got their hands dirty with lights.
And lighting manufacturers (there were no lighting designers back in the day) worked
closely with architects to great effect. The model here has to be the collaboration between
Edison Avery Price and Louis Kahn (see Jonathan Glancey’s excellent piece on page 32).
There wasn’t the demarcation there is today between natural light and electric light,
architects and lighting professionals.
Sure, lighting’s complicated and a ‘specialism’, with its own chair around the design team
table, but there’s no reason this should prevent collaborative outcomes that deliver excellence
in the lit environment. And in truth, it often does, as the pages of this magazine attest.
But the mainstream lighting in the majority of buildings is, at best, thoughtless and
perfunctory; at worst bad for wellbeing, inefficient and does the building no favours.
Yet we are fortunate to live in an age of unprecedented possibilities for light in the built
environment. By employing some of the techniques and technologies we can elevate our
creations from the everyday to the exceptional.
Ray Molony, Editor