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Monday, 18 December, 2017, 15 : 48 PM [IST]

LET THERE BE LIGHT

The discussions and presentations at a recent event at the Professional Lighting Designers Conference at Paris held a torch to the science, philosophy, technology and aesthetics behind the concept of light, both natural and artificial, especially in the context of architecture and urban life.

Indian tourism could do well on a varied number of fields but presenting its tourism potential in the right light is becoming a very urgent task. There is no pun involved in this statement since how visitors perceive a destination depends on not just that the sites don’t remain in the dark, but how intelligently they have been lit up.

The play of shadows, subtle illumination and intelligent design has yet to mark its presence in the urban landscape of most Indian cities. The illumination of Raisina Hill in the capital does indicate an understanding in government circles about the importance of architectural lighting, but that barely scratches the surface a crying need.

What is needed is a coherent policy and thought on streamlining the process. A paper presented at the Paris show by some Indian light professionals and academics dwelt on how more needs to be done to improve the quality and measure the right ‘strength’ of light for the LED revolution growing in the country with active government support.

The need for direct inclusion of light design experts in the framing of rules, selection of technologies and designing of the aesthetics of tourism places is an emergent need. Actually this exercise is not to be limited to tourist sites or monuments only, but an educated sense and sensibility is necessary for the humble street lamp as well.

The common approach of municipal corporations for ‘flood lights’ to illuminate public parks, roads and buildings has to be replaced with a more developed and nuanced language of light.

The common approach of municipal corporations for ‘flood lights’ to illuminate public parks, roads and buildings has to be replaced with a more developed and nuanced language of light.

Paris was known as the City of Lights in the early 20th century only because it was the first town in that era to experiment, discover and innovate with lighting technology, howsoever basic it was at that time, to create the magic of urban lighting.

While some can gloat over satellite images that show well lit Indian cities from space but intelligently lit landscapes and not self congratulatory sentiment is the real reason that will make for better Indian cities and encourage tourist visits in the long run.

Anurag Yadav
Industry Expert

The views expressed within this column are the opinion of the author, and may not necessarily be endorsed by the publication.
 
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