Conversations about the effects of light on humans and spaces, about the introduction of technology in lighting fixtures, or about the many innovations that we can expect for the future are some of the themes designers can expect to indulge in at these conferences and events. Knowing how exciting this is, D5MAG chose the 10 most important events for the lighting design industry, all happening in 2024. If one has already passed, no problem, save it for next year.

Light + Building (March 3–8, Germany) 

Photo credit: Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH
Photo credit: Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH

The Light + Building event is a key happening for lighting designers all over the world, as it includes over 2,000 exhibitions and more than 150,000 visitors from all over the world. The lighting and building sectors of design are always well represented as industry leaders get together to discuss the industry’s future and the current problems society faces.

SustainabilityConnectivity, and Work+Living are the main themes of this year’s edition. Visitors are invited to reflect on the critical needs of the lighting and building industry, such as energy efficiency, sustainable practices, and the integration of digital technologies.

LEDucation (March 19-20, USA)

Photo credit: LEDucation
Photo credit: LEDucation

LEDucation is the largest LED-only tradeshow and educational forum in the United States, where visitors delve deeper into the power of lighting design and its effect on humans. As a non-profit, the event’s goal is purely to stimulate LED innovation through scholarships and lighting programmes.

Speakers from diverse backgrounds have always been assiduous participants in the event, so expect to meet leading voices from industries such as lighting design, manufacturing, and technology. The event hosts a series of educational conferences that analyse sustainability, trends, health and well-being, and LED technologies. Exhibitions are also held, as manufacturers from all over the US are invited to showcase their projects and products, making this event great for networking and finding future collaborators.

Lightovation (January 10–14 and June 19–21, USA)

Photo credit: Dallas Market Centre, Lightovation
Photo credit: Dallas Market Centre, Lightovation

Lightovation is a biannual event in the US recognised as the largest residential lighting trade event in North America. Business, trade, and networking are given centre stage in this event as the venue joins all of the most innovative people and products in residential lighting design.

New lighting collections are known to be presented here first, with interconnectivity and LED technology at heart, making this event a must for professionals in the industry. The Metaverse Lighting TrendHouse is specific to this event, where future trends and technologies in lighting design are shared with the public, who can’t help going back home and dreaming about the magic of the future. showcasing future trends and technologies in lighting.

IES24: The Lighting Conference (August 15–17, USA)

Photo credit: Illuminating Engineering Society
Photo credit: Illuminating Engineering Society

The IES24 Lighting Conference event is held in New York City once a year, a city that has already marked its place among the design community with several other events. The conference is centred around themes all related to lighting design, such as research, design, technology, and brands, making it a must-attend event for those who wish to broaden their knowledge in the industry.

Education is a pillar of this conference, as the calendar is filled with workshops, presentations, talks, and socialising moments where the conversation always surrounds light and technology. The Industry Progress Report is a star of this conference, which, along with exhibits and receptions, gives professionals valuable insight into the industry and opens up networking opportunities. In the end, the Mai event of the conference puts a spotlight on some of the industry’s best. A gala is held where great design and knowledge of the field are awarded: the Illuminations Awards Gala.

ArchLIGHT Summit (September 17-18, USA)

Photo credit: Dallas Market Centred, ArchLIGHT Summit
Dallas Market Centred, ArchLIGHT Summit

The ArchLIGHT Summit is a commercial and architectural lighting event where visitors are offered an interactive, inclusive, and collaborative experience. Multidisciplinary at heart, this event strives to show the importance of lighting design in any space, which is why you can expect more than just lighting designers to attend, as interior designers and architects are also part of the party.

Workshops and educational sessions are held while brands and designers showcase their latest products and share their visions, making this the perfect place to experiment, learn, and collaborate. Live-streamed sessions are also held, opening up the event for students from local universities to participate and learn from it.

IALD Enlighten Americas (October 17–19, USA)

Photo credit: International Associations of Lighting Designers
Photo credit: International Associations of Lighting Designers

IALD Enlighten Americas takes place in the Californian Rancho Bernardo region, acting as one of the top conferences in the architectural lighting design industry. Education, networking, and innovation share the space, making this a conference no designer wants to miss out on.

The latest trends, technologies, and best methods in architectural lighting design are discussed in detail in the many workshopslectures, and conferences held at this event. Establishing new relationships among designers is a major goal of this event, so the IALD Enlighten Americas is perfect for either well-established industry professionals or young designers looking for a shot.

Prestigious industry leaders and designers are expected to talk and give presentations, giving both inspiration and guidance to those who wish to make a change in the lighting design world. On the other hand, exhibitions of the latest lighting products, technologies, and solutions give visitors hands-on experience with new products and the invaluable chance to give their feedback to manufacturers.

NAILD Annual Convention (August 19–21, USA) 

Photo credit: National Association of Innovative Lighting Distributors
Photo credit: National Association of Innovative Lighting Distributors

The NAILD Annual Convention gathers professionals from the lighting distribution industry under the same roof, providing the perfect platform for networking, education, and innovation in lighting technology and distribution.

Expect keynote presentations from industry leaders, networking events to create connections, and interesting conversations where collaboration and light are the main topics. In the end, the highlight of the event is the President’s Dinner, which creates an extra relaxed setting for networking and socialising.

Light-Tech Expo (May 9–11, Poland)

Photo credit: Ptak Warsaw Expo
Photo credit: Ptak Warsaw Expo

The Light-Tech Expo is an international lighting trade fair where companies get the chance to showcase their innovative technologies and products, as well as create new business relationships in the field of lighting.

Over 7,000 visitors are expected, as well as more than 110 exhibitors. Because of this, the Light-Tech Expo is more than a conference, it is a comprehensive get-together of industry leaders and lighting innovation. Visitors will be able to meet industry professionals, designers, and manufacturers, as well as explore the many products that shed light on the future of lighting design.

IALD Enlighten Europe (June 21–22, UK) 

Photo credit: International Associations of Lighting Designers
Photo credit: International Associations of Lighting Designers

The IALD Enlighten Europe is a conference that focuses on the lighting design industry, its future and wonders, and how technology and designers can help transform it. To accomplish this, the event hosts presentations, and workshops, and offers visitors invaluable networking opportunities.

This is the perfect event to learn from industry leaders and engage in discussions about the latest trends and technologies in lighting design. Interactive in nature, the event opens up the space for industry professionals to connect with one another, such as designers, architects, engineers, manufacturers, and suppliers.

Some of the highlights of this event are its keynote speeches, lighting cross-talk sessions, exhibitor demonstrations, and social gatherings. On the other hand, the conference also shed light on students and educators, who are recognised by the IALD Education Trust, which acts as a little push for the next generation of lighting designers.

Guzhen International Lighting Fair (October 22–26, China)

Photo credit: Guzhen International Lighting Fair
Photo credit: Guzhen International Lighting Fair

The Guzhen International Lighting Fair, held at the Guzhen Convention and Exhibition Centre in Zhongshan, China, is an important event in the lighting industry. Not only does it showcase the latest in lighting technologies, products, and innovations from around the world, but it also connects Western and Eastern professionals through their love of design.

The fair will be introducing new elements this year, such as smart lighting experiences, new energy applications, and crossover home goods, making it a specialisedmarket-oriented, and international industry event. Its impressive exhibition area spans a whopping 1.5 million square metres and hosts around 3,300 lighting exhibitions.

Such a massive and comprehensive setting gives visitors the perfect chance to network, increasing, in the end, their phone book with several international names that can come in handy when wanting to expand a business. Known for its organisation and high quality, this fair is a must-attend for lighting designers—or any designer and manufacturer, really—from all over the world.

Text: Leonor Gomes

The countdown is on with only a few days to go before the doors open on the world’s leading trade fair for lighting and building-services technology in Frankfurt am Main. And this major event for the sector is already proving to be very popular. More than 2,000 national and international exhibitors have registered to present their innovations to a wide audience of trade visitors. They include numerous market leaders who will be showing their latest products for the fields of lighting, electrical engineering, home and building automation and networked safety and security technology.

The next Light + Building will be held from 3 to 8 March 2024, and after Germany, the best-represented nations to date include Italy, Turkey, Spain, Poland, the Netherlands, Great Britain, France, Belgium, Greece and China. “There is a high level of interest in taking part again in 2024, on both the lighting and building sides. We are delighted about the many loyal customers who took part in the last edition of the fair, as well as about a whole series of returning exhibitors. They all ensure that Light + Building is the unrivalled, international highlight for the lighting and building-technology sectors”, says Johannes Möller, Head of Light + Building Brand Management. Expanding on this, he adds: “There have been some changes at the Exhibition Centre, which have opened up new planning options for us.”

Experts for lighting with a new structure

Covering the spectrum from offices and educational facilities to the industry, retail trade and hotel business, Light + Building brings together experts for intelligent lighting solutions at the Frankfurt Fair and Exhibition Centre. Altogether, this theme occupies around 64 percent of total exhibition space. New in this connection is the layout of the product segments, which has been made possible by the inclusion of the new Hall 5 with two modern floors that are open to Light + Building exhibitors for the first time. This creates a new circular route in the eastern section of the Exhibition Centre, which runs from Halls 5 and 6, via the Forum and Hall 3, to Hall 4, and is made effortless by the Via Mobile system of moving walkways.

What can visitors expect in which halls?

The market leaders from the ‘technical lighting’ segment are to be found in Halls 3.0, 5 and the Forum. The exhibitors showing their latest products include Bega, Brumberg, Glamox, iGuzzini, Leds C4, Ledvance, Lichtwerk, Molto Luce, Normagrup, Regiolux, Ridi, RZB, Simes, Thorn, Tridonic, Trilux, XAL and Zumtobel.

Hall 3.1 focuses on decorative and technical, design-oriented lighting with presentations being made, for example, by Artemide, Delta Light, 3F Filippi, Linea Light, Marinelli Luce, Prolicht and Targetti.

Urban lighting for streets and public places will be shown by many companies including AEC Illuminazione, Benito Urban, Carandini, Eclatec, Fonroche, Leipziger Leuchten, Metalogalva, Ragni and Valmont in Hall 4.0. A floor higher, in Hall 4.1, visitors will find not only lighting for industry and special applications but also shop and theatre lighting, as well as emergency and safety lighting. Among the exhibitors taking part there will be Barthelme, Deko Light, Eaton, Inotec, Nobilé, Opple, Robus, Rutec, Radium, RP Group and SG Armaturen.

The complete spectrum of decorative lighting is located in Hall 6 where the exhibitors include Authentage, Elstead Lighting, Fan Europe, Konstsmide, Lucide and Nordlux, plus the companies taking part in the Turkish pavilion.

The lighting sector also occupies part of the western section of the Exhibition Centre and, for the first time, takes up the whole of Hall 8. With the focus there on lighting components, sources of light and lighting control systems, the exhibitors presenting their latest products include Bender + Wirth, BJB, Nichia, Osram, Seoul Semiconductor, TCI, Vossloh-Schwabe and Wago.

Hall 10.1 and 10.2 are devoted to Asian lighting manufacturers in the Asia Selection segment.

The Light + Building 2024 hall plan shows the various product segments at a glance. (Source: Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH)
The Light + Building 2024 hall plan shows the various product segments at a glance. (Source: Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH)

Looking ahead with intelligent building-services technology

Based on the electrotechnical infrastructure, tomorrow’s sustainable houses and buildings will use renewable sources of energy, have efficient and economical energy management, and, at the same time, offer a high degree of comfort, safety and security. The electrotechnical infrastructure is the prerequisite for home and building automation, energy storage and management, the connection of photovoltaic systems and charging stations and electricity-based heating systems. The latest products, technologies and trends for electrical engineering and home and building automation will be the focus of attention in Halls 9, 11 and 12.

Many of the sector’s key players have already confirmed their participation in the fair. In Hall 12.0, they include ABB, ABL, Bals, Bosch Thermotechnik, Busch-Jaeger, Dehn SE, Kaiser, Niedax, SMA, Stiebel Eltron, Theben, Viessmann and Warema. A floor higher, in Hall 12.1, the exhibitors will include Doepke, Fränkische Rohrwerke, Hager, Mennekes, Hensel, OBO Bettermann and PCE.

The extensive range of electrotechnical and home and building-automation products continues in Hall 11.0 with exhibitors such as Beckhoff, Phoenix Contact, Rittal, Siemens, Wago and Weidmüller. In Hall 11.1 the companies taking part include Gira, Jung, Legrand, MDT, Schneider Electric and Siedle.

The safety and security technology segment has also been expanded under the heading ‘Intersec Building’ and can be found in Hall 9.0. Among the exhibitors there showing solutions for connected safety and security technology will be Abus, BKS, Dom, Gretsch Unitas, Grothe and Winkhaus. In addition, the range of products and services for electrical engineering, house and building technology continues in Hall 9.0. Here, Bacnet, EnOcean, frogblue, Loytec, Megger, Thermokon and Woertz show their innovative products.

You can find the Interactive Hall Plan 2024 here.

Light is such an important part of our lives that more and more people are looking to further their understanding of it, either through self-education or by seeking the guidance of experts. There’s so much to get from a lighting design degree: colour theory, the influence of light in our circadian rhythms, how light diffusion works, the materials and the perfect light for them, and much more.

Read on to discover some of the best lighting design schools, courses and universities.

Ryerson University, School of Interior Design – Certificate in Lighting Design

Ryerson University’s School of Interior Design pushes students to engage in experimentation and academic research, combining both approaches to help them grow and discover themselves in design. Recognized by many as one of the top international design schools, RSID aims to prepare the leaders of tomorrow in each design field.

Their Lighting Specialization program is fully online and intended for those who already have some background in other areas of design, such as interior design and architecture. This specialization is meant to acclimate designers to new legislations that limit energy budgets, which are probable to get more serious as time goes on. This environmentally conscious approach to education is supported by the possibility of getting in touch with professional lighting designers through a final project that will not only enrich the students’ curriculums but also give them hands-on experience.

Photo credit: Toronto Metropolitan University
Photo credit: Toronto Metropolitan University

Parsons School of Design – MFA in Lighting Design

The Parsons School of Design is widely considered the best design school in the United States and one of the best worldwide, having always sought inspiration from the transformative potential of design. With groundbreaking academic programs that take on an interdisciplinary approach complemented by the cultural and artistic richness of New York City.

Parson’s Lighting Design program was the first of its kind ever to be created in the world, more than 45 years ago. Such a long and pivotal history means that some of the leaders in the lighting design field have come directly from here – who knows, maybe your favourite designers studied here! The foundation of the program is the intellectual, aesthetic, and technical qualities of light, which are complemented by the social impact, human experience, and sustainability of lighting design. If New York, rich artistic history, and a comprehensive study of light are what you are looking for, then Parson’s must be calling out for you: our advice is to follow since you’re sure to get everything you need (and more) to be able to leave your mark in the lighting design world.

Photo credit: James Ewing
Photo credit: James Ewing

Politecnico di Milano, POLI.design – Specializing Master in Lighting Design and Technology

POLI.design is the design school founded by the Politecnico di Milano, right in the middle of one of the capitals of design. The allure is obvious: Italy, one of the very best schools of design, and an electric combination of art and culture. Apart from this, the design programs are widely known as part of the world elite in the field, all due to the incredible faculty, comprehensive teaching methods, and the array of opportunities that open up for the students.

Poli Design’s Master in Lighting Design and Technology strives to train professionals able to follow the design procedures of lighting, making sure that their students are well acclimated with the various methodologies of conception, organization, and implementation. This Master understands how impactful light can be in our well-being, in how we communicate with others, and in how we view the world. If your passion is the influence of light on humans and how it can affect businesses, relations, and any human activity sectors, plus if you would love to spend your study sessions in an Italian library with a cappuccino, then we invite you to further check this one out.

Photo credit: POLI.design
Photo credit: POLI.design

Hochschule Wismar – MA in Lighting Design

The Wismar University planted its roots in Germany in 1908 and has since been growing its majors and influence. The original design school was set on Germany’s seaside, which was surely beautiful, but when it was transferred to the Wismar campus it truly began to bloom. The international environment and interdisciplinary possibilities allowed the Hochschule Wismar to grow into what is now one of the best in the world.

Their Master in Lighting Design is fully taught in English and promises a wide range of nationalities, so your peers will be of great influence to your learning and great collaborations are to be expected. The teaching is divided into theoretical and practical courses, and students are presented with the various impacts and possibilities of both artificial and natural light in architecture and social spaces. Apart from this, the effects of light in humans are thoroughly studied, so that students are given all the information they need to make the best lighting designs possible. Knowing this, if you are someone who loves diversity, socializing with people from other countries, and having a collaborative and comprehensive education, our tip is to go for this one!

Photo credit: University of Wismar
Photo credit: University of Wismar

KTH Royal Institute of Technology – MSc of Architectural Lighting Design

The KTH is one of the largest institutions in Sweden for technical education and research, attracting students and professionals from all over the world. Their technical focus makes them one of the most important contributors to the innovation of design fields. This prestigious position is sure to be maintained as KTH focuses more on sustainability and ecological challenges.

KTH Royal Institute of Technology offers a Master’s in Architectural Lighting Design, one of the best out there. The program researches the influence of light on the human body and psyche, trying to find the best ways to enhance how we benefit from light. This Master’s is meant for those who already have an understanding of light planning and how to work a project so that students can truly grow their understanding of this almost magical element.

Photo credit: Folio Images, About KTH
Photo credit: Folio Images, About KTH

University of Technology Sydney – Master of Architectural Science (Illumination Design)

The University of Technology Sydney has been sharing its knowledge and producing leaders in the many fields society depends on (such as design, obviously) for more than 170 years, making it a proud member of the top 20 universities in the world.

Their Master in Architectural Science (Illumination Design) mixes strong technical subjects with human perception, creating a long curriculum where technology, lighting qualities, and sustainability are the stars. If you decide to apply and end up enrolling, you can expect to gain a newfound respect for the many ways light shapes our experience of both the world and the built environment.

Photo credit: UTS
Photo credit: UTS

California Institute of the Arts, School of Theatre (CalArts) – MFA in Lighting Design

Are you familiar with CalTech? Well, let us introduce you to CalArts, or in its most formal self the California Institute of the Arts, which has been educating professional artists since 1970. Known as one of the best arts schools in the United States, CalArts strives to foster creative excellence, critical reflection, and the development of new forms and expressions in their students.

Their MFA in Lighting Design curriculum centres on developing critical and practical skills in immersive lighting design, lighting technology and platforms, and strategies for live performance across a wide variety of creative arenas. Students are taught how to understand the physiological and psychological effects of light in addition to other scientific principles of phenomenology. Everyone is pushed into finding their voice and aesthetic, ending their time in CalArts with a lot of experience in production work and a vast portfolio.

Photo credit: California Institute of the Arts
Photo credit: California Institute of the Arts

Aalborg University – MSc in Lighting Design

Aalborg University is known in the lighting design realm as one of the best universities to study light and how to channel it to our benefit. The university’s core objective is to discover which are the greatest challenges society and the various academic fields it teaches face, striving to provide sustainable solutions consistently.

They offer an MSc in Lighting Design which covers both artificial and natural light, intersecting it with architecture, media technology, and engineering – quite interdisciplinary. What makes this specific Master unique is its base in Danish and Nordic traditions for light perception, which means they not only focus on the technical qualities of light but also on the aesthetics and comforts it provides.

Photo credit: Danmarks Internationale Kollegium
Photo credit: Danmarks Internationale Kollegium

University of the Arts London – MA Interior and Spatial Design

The University of the Arts London is ranked second in the world for Art and Design, as per the 2022 QS World University Rankings. It offers a wide variety of courses ranging from design, fashion, communication, performing arts, and many others, so it’s no surprise that its MA in Interior and Spatial Design covers many of these artistic fields.

Their MA in Interior and Spatial Design explores how design can challenge world issues and drive positive social change, empowering their students with real-world experiences through their global and regional partners. Light is studied here concerning space and interior design, being completely dissected in the way it interacts with a room and how it affects us. This MA can, in the end, make you rethink your entire approach to design and light, as it covers so many fields and interconnects them with each other.

Photo credit: Ideal Insight
Photo credit: Ideal Insight

University College London, Institute for Environmental Design and Engineering (UCL) – MSc in Light and Lighting

The UCL was founded in 1826 in the heart of London and is considered the most multidisciplinary and international university in the country. Here, progressive approaches, leading experts as professors, and a diversity of peers are sure to give you a boost of creativity and make you see design in a whole new light.

Their MSc in Light and Lighting mixes the human experience with the technical and creative sides of lighting design. It was created in 1987 and has produced some of the world’s leading lighting engineers and designers. From indoor comfort to outdoor safety, light is used to find a solution to society’s issues, making UCL’s students some of the most prepared to tackle any challenges that might appear in the future.

Text: Leonor Gomes

The LIT Design Awards catalog showcases the best of 2023 Lighting Designs and Lighting Product Designs! The brochure features exclusive interviews with Ryan Salim from ERRELUCE, winner of the “Architectural Lighting Design of the Year” with the IronPlate Restaurant; Eleftheria Deko of Eleftheria Deko & Associates, winner  of the “Entertainment Lighting Design of the Year” for the “Persephone Reconsiders Her Fate” and Chris Sorensen, the Senior Director of Engineering at Hydrel, winner of the “Lighting Product Design of the Year.”

Takatoku Nishi, a student of the Tokyo University of The Arts, won the “Emerging Lighting Designer of the Year” title with “Ripple”, and speaks with us about his love for design and inspiration for Ripple.  Arash Abbaszadeh, a student at the Hochschule Wismar in Germany and winner of the  “Emerging Lighting Designer of the Year” prize, shares his enthusiasm and future professional aspirations.

The annual catalog includes an introduction of the recipients of the 2023 “Lifetime Achievement” Award, Roger Narboni, Pioneer in Urban Lighting Design. Last, an insightful article on darksky, the “Spotlight” 2023 recipient, on their Harmonious Approach to Sustainable Lighting.

The catalog is available to purchase on Amazon and can be downloaded on the LIT Awards website.

The LIT Lighting Design Awards is officially open for submissions, inviting the world’s brightest minds in lighting design to join its annual celebration of excellence. This distinguished event, renowned for honoring the pinnacle of creativity and innovation, boasts an expansive array of categories, comprising 31 in Architectural Lighting Design, 15 in Entertainment Lighting Design, and an impressive 44 in Lighting Product Design.

In 2023, the program attracted over 800 submissions from 58 countries, showcasing an extraordinary spectrum of work. Notable recognitions included the Architectural Lighting Design of the Year 2023 awarded to ERRELUCE for their remarkable work on IronPlate Restaurant, and the Lighting Product Design of the Year 2023 claimed by Hydrel for their FLAME Lighting Technique. The introduction of the Entertainment Lighting Design of the Year category saw Eleftheria Deko & Associates triumph for their work on “Persephone Reconsiders Her Fate.” Introduced in 2018, the Lifetime Achievement Award celebrated Roger Narboni for his outstanding contributions spanning landscape, urban, heritage, and architectural lighting over 35 years. DarkSky received the prestigious Spotlight Prize for their unwavering commitment to preserving the darkness of the sky.

At the LIT Lighting Design Awards, we invite you to join us in celebrating the amazing potential of light and its ability to transform the world around us. Our program goes beyond recognizing great designs; it’s about appreciating the positive impact of lighting solutions. We take pride in providing a stage where creative minds come together to showcase their talents while being mindful of the long-term effects on our environment. The LIT Design Awards values the importance of sustainability in lighting design, encouraging designers to share their approaches and contribute to a more environmentally friendly future for our planet,”  shared Program Director, Astrid Hébert.

The 2024 jury, composed of 35 experienced designers, lighting experts, academics and media representatives will select the winners in each category in November 2024. Past jurors have included Sooner Routhier, CEO of The Playground, Roland Greil from Roland Greil & The Black Project, Emmy Award Winner Peter Morse; Randy Reid, Editor at designing lighting (dl), Sally Storey, Creative Director at John Cullen Lighting and Founding Director at Lighting Design International, Thiago Gaya, Publisher of L+D Magazine and Founder of the LEDforum, amongst others.

To ensure winners receive the recognition they deserve, LIT Lighting Design Awards have joined forces with notable media partners such as V2com, D5mag.com, Silhouette Awards, World Design Organization, and DesignWanted, guaranteeing extensive global publicity for the awarded projects. Additionally, winners work will be featured in the annual Book of Design distributed worldwide and presented with the coveted LIT Lighting Design Awards certificate and badge of achievement, along with a year-round profile in the LIT Awards Online Directory. Participating in the awards process offers a valuable learning experience, allowing companies to benchmark their work against industry peers and gain insights into areas for improvement.

To encourage early submissions, a 10% Early Bird discount is available until April 28th, 2024. For detailed information and to submit entries, please visit litawards.com. Illuminate your brilliance – be part of the LIT Lighting Design Awards 2024!

The much-anticipated LIT Lighting Design Awards Gala is set to captivate on the 20th of June, promising an evening of brilliance, innovation, and design excellence in the heart of London. The ceremony will take place at the iconic Banking Hall, an Art Deco landmark that stands as a testament to the city’s design culture and architectural brilliance. Overlooking the prestigious Bank of England, this venue provides a stunning backdrop for an evening that will undoubtedly be the highlight of the lighting design world.

The ceremony will feature prestigious winners from 2022 and 2023, including 2023 winners ERRELUCE for Architectural Lighting Design of the Year of the IronPlate Restaurant and Hydrel for Lighting Product Design of the Year, FLAME Lighting Technique. In 2022, L’Observatoire International received Lighting Design of the Year for Hermès’ collections, and Expolight won Lighting Product Design of the Year for the B14 UNIT Chandelier.

Spotlight Prize winners feature DarkSky in 2023 for outstanding commitment to preserving the darkness of the sky, and The Studio School of Design (SSD) in 2022 for remarkable work towards education accessibility, diversity, and inclusivity. Esteemed Lifetime Achievement Awardees include Roger Narboni in 2023 and Patrick Woodroffe, Dave Kavanagh in 2022, recognizing their significant contributions to the lighting industry.

Reserved exclusively for the winners of the LIT Lighting Design Awards from 2022 and 2023, alongside their specially invited guests, esteemed jury board members, and a select group of partners, this upcoming event presents an exceptional opportunity for brands to claim the spotlight at the forefront of the lighting design world. Each honoree will step into the well-deserved spotlight, not only to receive accolades but also to capture the attention of influential media figures and industry leaders. The event is expected to attract significant press coverage and the participation of renowned media names, ensuring widespread recognition and valuable networking opportunities for all involved.

This event is more than a celebration; it’s a recognition of the innovators who have shaped the landscape of lighting design,” said Astrid Hebert, Program Director of the LIT Lighting Design Awards. “Limited partnership spots are available, offering brands a unique opportunity to be at the forefront of the lighting design world.

Limited partnership spots will allow chosen brands to gain visibility and recognition within one of the most extensive platforms for excellence in Architectural Lighting Design, Entertainment Lighting Design, and Lighting Product Design. Partners will be able to showcase their brand, engage with industry professionals, and support emerging talents in the dynamic field of lighting design. For those eager to secure one of the limited partnership spots, kindly visit litawards.com to get in touch.

Welcome to an exclusive interview with Chris Sorensen, the Senior Director of Engineering at Hydrel, a leading brand in outdoor architectural and landscape lighting. Hydrel recently won the LIT Lighting Design Award for the Lighting Product Design of the Year with their innovation, FLAME.

FLAME combines a patent-pending optical engine construction with engineering excellence to create a new play on RGBW. It’s a unique lighting technique with two beams in one luminaire – a central beam and an outer beam that blends harmoniously.

Currently available within the SAF7, SAF14, and SAF28 Architectural Family, FLAME offers three distinct distributions, each designed to create stunning accent gradient effects in a single fixture. From the NARROW FLAME, with its 30° outer beam and 10° central beam, highlighting vertical forms, to the WIDE FLAME‘s 70° outer beam and 30° central beam for playful blended textured surfaces, and finally, the LOTUS FLAME, delivering a dramatic lighting effect with a 70° outer beam and 10° central beam.

Join us as we explore the inspiration behind FLAME and gain valuable insights into the vision and expertise that have positioned Hydrel as a premier brand in outdoor lighting.

Chris Sorensen Senior Director of Engineering

Chris Sorensen, Senior Director of Engineering // FLAME Lighting Technique. Hydrel

What was the vision or inspiration behind the dual beam design (or should we say designs) of FLAME?

We are very inspired by some incredible projection art installations while simultaneously feeling tired of saturated RGB color chases and challenged ourselves to build a new tool with which to paint the night in a new way.

How was the patent-pending optical engine developed and what makes stand out from others? 

Leveraging our learnings from the SAF architectural floodlight family, we built, studied, and learned from countless mock-ups and prototypes until we got the best-performing gradients and eliminated distracting artifacts on near and far away surfaces.

Can you tell us about the different designs available – Narrow FLAME, Wide FLAME, and Lotus FLAME? How do you envision each being used? 

Narrow and Wide FLAME Distributions are all about the geometry of the architecture from landscape to columns, facades, and bridges, narrow and wide can be applied like traditional projectors however with the gradient color and in washing or grazing positions they will magically transform the appearance of surfaces and objects. We were so captivated when we pointed them at trees that we knew we needed to do something specific. That’s where the Lotus FLAME came from, the desire to distinctly light the trunk with one color and the leaves and branches another with a smooth but quick gradient between the two. 

Challenges are part of life, and, therefore, of design. Can you share with us some of the technical challenges you’ve faced during the development of FLAME? What did you learn from them? 

Near-field beam artifacts take a highly specialized eye and perseverance to solve. The human eyes and brain can start to play some very interesting games when staring at beams of different saturated colors for hours criticizing gradients, intensity, cutoff, and artifacting.  

FLAME Lighting Technique. Hydrel

FLAME Lighting Technique. Hydrel

Can you tell us about any project you’re working on at the moment or about any future enhancements for FLAME? 

Stay tuned, FLAME is just the start.  We have a very exciting follow-up product in development right now!

Congratulations on winning the LIT Awards! What does winning this award mean to you and what are the next steps for Hydrel? 

We’re incredibly honored to win this award. We will continue to make the ordinary evening extraordinary and transform the way our world is LIT!

Do you have any advice for people who would like to follow in your footsteps? 

Be curious, be brave. It’s never too early to try out your wild idea. Even if it is just in Photoshop. The first FLAME mock-up was done with a Photoshop file where we set up a visual of two beams on top of each other so that we could independently control the color and blending of the beams much like the FLAME visualizer on our website. From that very first file, we knew we had something special!



Takatoku Nishi, emerging winner of the 2023 LIT Lighting Design Award for Architectural Lighting Design, brings us to the magic of his creation, “Ripple.” On sunny days, sunlight dances through ceiling pipes, mimicking drops of water. Nishi’s design captures nature’s unpredictability, offering a unique experience with every visit.

“Ripple” was Nishi’s Ph.D. project, surprising with its location between the zoo and the university. Amid urban surroundings, it boasts lush greenery and wildlife. Nishi’s hands-on approach, considering sunlight, wind, and site shape, resulted in a masterpiece reflecting nature’s accidental beauty. This interview uncovers the inspiration, construction challenges, and the profound connection between “Ripple” and its natural surroundings.

In Conversation with Takatoku Nishi: Architectural Lighting Design's Emerging Talent

Could you tell us a little about yourself?

I am an artist and PhD based in Tokyo. As a constructor and phenomenon creator, I pursue and research spatial experiences with light. My long-standing focus has been on natural light. I try to reconstruct the phenomenon of light by using materials and structures to sublimate this natural light into artworks. Natural light is familiar to us and is the most beautiful and natural light. I believe that by passing this through the medium of architecture, a new spatial experience can be created.  

Apart from pure architectural spaces, I am also interested in installation works that focus on the power and interest of nature. Looking at the power of nature and the beauty of light from different angles gives me new ideas.

Can you share your design philosophy or vision behind Ripple?

Ripple is for me the most ideal space of all the light spaces I have researched and created. In our daily life, “the wind blows and the light shines.” Just this everyday force of nature can create dramatic and beautiful phenomena. This idea is inspired by atmospheric optical phenomena. For example, when it rains and the sky is clear, you can see a rainbow. When light passes through clouds, it also creates beautiful sights such as an angel’s ladder. By manipulating these little coincidences in nature, I came up with a new way of expressing space. Therefore, light phenomena are not always present in the Ripple space. When it is cloudy and raining, light cannot be seen. Similarly, if there is no wind, the phenomena will not move. The spatial experience is also different depending on the wind speed. It is a remarkable day-to-day change. I designed this space to allow people to slowly experience the daily changes. The lighting of the space, the number and spacing of the pipes, the height and width of the space, the spacing, the materials and shades of the floor and walls – all have been calculated to provide a pleasant experience of the phenomenon of light.

Your design incorporates natural elements like the sun and the wind into the design. Can you describe the technical process behind the different light phenomena you’ve achieved through this balance?

The most time-consuming part of the research was the mechanism for directing the natural light. First, I tested more than 20 patterns for each pipe, including length, diameter, material and shape. Pipes that are too long or too short, too wide or too narrow do not make the phenomenon beautiful. The shape and material of the pipe is determined which can produce the most beautiful phenomena at a ceiling height of 4 metres in the room. The next step is to develop a mechanism to naturally direct the sun’s rays into the pipes. In Japan, the angle of the sun rises to 78°, almost 90° in summer, but in winter the angle drops by 47° to 31°. Therefore, light coming from the side has to be directed into the pipe at an angle of 90 degrees. A lot of research has gone into achieving this and it has been successful.

Finally, the lighting design of the room itself, where the light phenomena produced by the pipe mechanism are experienced, is designed to bring light into the room through louvred wall surfaces to prevent it from becoming too dark. The width, spacing and colour of the louvres are designed to reflect light into the room. The amount of light is also adjusted according to the architectural shape, so that the interior is dimly lit at around 35 lx. This lighting level is based on the darkness of tea rooms, which I have found to be comfortable.

Any project has its challenges, especially those that require the surrounding environment’s input. Which challenges did you face while working on the design and what did you learn from them?

During this project there was only one problem I could not solve on my own. That was the floor. Initially, it was thought that white gravel would be used due to the unfavourable ground level of the site. However, it turned out that it would have taken several tons of gravel to cover the equivalent of 95 square metres. It was impossible to lay that amount of gravel in this location, so when I was thinking about it a lot, I got advice from an acquaintance and got to know plastering. I learnt a lot about plastering, as I usually have a strong impression of plaster treatment for wall surfaces and had no idea about using it as a floor. I was also taught how to apply the plaster and really got to know how to treat and work it.

How did you incorporate sustainability into Ripple’s design? 

My idea of sustainability is to know the beauty of the natural environment around us that we have now. When the sun disappears from the earth and the breeze stops, there will be no more ‘Ripple’. The driving force behind this work is literally the power of nature. As long as there are forces of nature, they will create beautiful phenomena.

Congratulations on winning the “ Emerging Lighting Designer of the Year 2023! What does winning this award mean to you?

I am very honoured to have been selected for this prestigious award. I believe that many people have shared in the possibilities of the light spaces I have worked on. This makes me very happy. Encouraged by this award, I will continue to try new things and find many possibilities in the future. I also want to create an architecture where the natural environment and people can become one through light spaces.

What does your future look like? Are there any specific visions or natural phenomena you wish to explore?

There are lots of big and small things I want to try now. For the big ones, I’m thinking of a space for light phenomena, reminiscent of the Northern Lights. I also have a lot of other ideas, such as using the sea or double glass. Another theme I’ve been interested in recently is the idea of a space where people can experience light even in a bright space.

I recently participated in an artist-in-residence in Finland, investigating Finnish light of architecture. I used to think that light could be experienced because of dark spaces, but I discovered that light can also be expressed poetically and beauty can be experienced in bright spaces. The architectural space of Juha Leiviskä taught me this. Thank you very much. I was very moved by it. Please allow me to take this opportunity to pray for his soul.


Photo Credits: © Nacása & Partners Inc. Futa MORIISHI
Other Credits: Yukihide Nakano (DRONE SHOOTING)

Explore more HERE.

Step into the world of “Moist Sparkle,” the award-winning lighting installation by Arash Abbaszadeh. Designed at the University Hochschule Wismar for Galerie wolkenbank kunst+räume, this piece earned the LIGHTING PRODUCT DESIGN accolade at the LIT Lighting Design Awards 2023.

Abbaszadeh, under the guidance of Prof. Jan Blieske and Prof. Bettina Menzel, brings to life the delicate interplay of morning moisture and daylight, inspired by German literature’s poetic metaphors. Set against the backdrop of climate change challenges, “Moist Sparkle” captures the beauty of morning dew on silver hair. In our interview, Abbaszadeh unveils the project’s experimental exploration of winter horizon sun rays, skillfully blending very cold color temperature artificial light with northern Europe’s extended blue hours. The installation, featuring glass-blown lighting, scatters droplets within an incomplete sphere, each with varying salt and water concentrations.

With a narrow beam up-lighting technique, “Moist Sparkle” creates a twilight-like interference, offering distinct experiences at both micro and macro levels. Join us as we journey through the artistic vision and innovative techniques that define “Moist Sparkle,” a testament to the evolving intersection of nature and artificial light in the realm of contemporary design.

Moist Sparkle

Moist Sparkle / Arash Abbaszadeh

Could you tell us a little about yourself?

My name is Arash Abbaszadeh, an architect born in 1992 in Iran. My journey in architecture and interior design began in 2010, and over the years, I’ve cultivated experiences in residential and hospitality design. Currently, I’m embarking on a new chapter, pursuing my second master’s degree in architectural lighting design at Wismar University in Germany. This academic endeavor represents a significant step in my commitment to exploring innovative intersections between light and space.

Can you explain the concept behind Moist Sparkle? How did you take inspiration from old German literature and apply it to the design?

“Moist Sparkle” was an artistic endeavor that sake to capture the ethereal interplay between morning dew and light. phenomenon The concept draws its inspiration from metaphors found in German literature, where the incidence of morning dew on spider net is poetically likened to moisture on silver hair. This metaphor serves as the heart of this human scale installation, creating scattered moist sparkling drops into space that resonate as both strange and familiar in the viewer’s subconscious.

The aim was not just to create a physical representation of this natural occurrence but to evoke emotional connections with the sound of rain and winds into the cold abandoned edge of the building. By translating the metaphor into a visual and immersive experience, the installation tried to become a poetic dialogue between nature, literature, and light.

Can you describe the process behind the creation of the droplets? How did you play with the salt and water concentration to achieve different glass formations?

The creation of the droplets involved a very experimental process. An incomplete sphere was formed, and within it, droplets were scattered. Each droplet contained varying concentrations of salt and water. The project sought to employ a narrow beam spotlight to graze the droplets, revealing the intricate frozen details within.

The delicate appearance of light within frozen water was achieved through the careful consideration of salt concentrations. By utilizing a very cold color temperature light source, the project aimed to highlight the minuscule bubbles within the drops, creating a visually stunning experience. This experimentation with salt concentrations became a central focus, requiring numerous iterations to find the delicate balance between a semi-frozen sparkle and a murky appearance.

Moist Sparkle Arash Abbaszadeh


What was the vision behind the use of cold artificial light with the blue tones of northern European winters? How do these light fixtures enhance and play with the glass droplets?

The vision for incorporating cold artificial light with the blue hours of northern European winters was rooted in the desire to experiment with the interaction of winter horizon sun rays in the open corner of the gallery. The chosen color temperature elegantly intersected with the extended blue hours of northern Germany during winter.

The chosen color temperature served to vividly illuminate the minuscule bubbles within the drops with the coldest appearance, enhancing the overall visual experience. The incidence of light within glass-like droplets resulted in a captivating interplay that captured the essence of the chosen inspiration, morning dew, and its poetic nuances.

What challenges did you face during the design process of Moist Sparkle? How did you overcome them?

The primary effective challenge was the maintenance of salt concentrations within the droplets. Achieving the perfect refraction required a delicate balance that necessitated numerous experiments and adjustments.

The project did not attempt to prevent freezing but rather embraced it as part of the artistic expression. Determining the right amount of salt for a semi-frozen sparkle, as opposed to a murky appearance, demanded meticulous experimentation.

Moreover, the fluctuation of humidity emerged as a significant factor that needed careful consideration. Overcoming these challenges required a combination of artistic intuition and persistent experimentation. The project’s success in maintaining the concentration of salt, resulting in clear water during daylight and crispy water with outer dews until dawn, stands as a testament to the dedication invested in overcoming these challenges.

How did you apply sustainability to your design?

A decade ago, sustainability might have been a controversial approach to design, but nowadays, it is an essential aspect integrated into all design spirit. Though the project didn’t explicitly delve into sustainability discussions, it subtly conveys a message between the lines about the interconnectedness of nature, light, and artistic expression.

Congratulations on winning the LIT Awards, “Emerging Lighting Product Designer of the Year” grand title. Are there any new projects you’re working on at the moment that you can tell us about?

Currently, I am engaged in a year-long internship at The Flaming Beacon, Berlin studio. This experience is providing me with invaluable insights as I collaborate with my esteemed colleagues, focusing on high-end residential projects that serve global clients.

The exposure to such high-standing projects is expanding my skill set and offering opportunities to contribute to the broader discourse on architectural lighting design.

Last, what can we wish you for 2024?

As we look ahead to 2024, I appreciate your mesmerizing efforts in spreading the lighting design culture by promoting great examples of architectural lighting design practices. My hope for the coming year is to witness a social improvement in understanding the substantial difference between designing with light and superficially merely lit facades, and the significance of architectural lighting design.

May the small community of lighting design continue to evolve and foster a transformative power of light in our built environment. I wish for continued growth, inspiration, and meaningful contributions in the realm of architectural lighting design.

Welcome to our interview with Eleftheria Deko, the force behind Eleftheria Deko & Associates, a renowned lighting studio specializing in architectural, stage, and event lighting. With extensive experience in diverse projects, Eleftheria and her team provide tailored lighting solutions for a wide range of spaces.

Eleftheria Deko, the founder, not only leads this creative studio but also imparts her knowledge as an Assistant Professor at the Theater Department of the School of Fine Arts at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.

Having designed lighting for over 450 theatrical plays, operas, music events, multimedia shows, dance performances, and architectural lighting schemes, Eleftheria has earned acclaim and awards globally. We’re here to discuss her recent success at the LIT Lighting Design Awards 2023, where her project “Persephone Reconsiders Her Fate” was honored as the Entertainment Lighting Design of the Year. Join us as Eleftheria shares her insights into the creative process and the significance of lighting in shaping artistic and architectural experiences.

“Persephone Reconsiders Her Fate”. Photo Credits: Gavriil Papadiotis / John Stathis.

“Persephone Reconsiders Her Fate”. Photo Credits: Gavriil Papadiotis / John Stathis. // Eleftheria Deko

What was your inspiration behind your artistic rendering of the myth of Persephone through lighting and projection?

This specific myth served as our inspiration. Analyzing the story of Persephone, who was abducted by Hades and descended into the underworld before returning to the upper world again, we saw it as a symbolic journey into our inner selves, navigating the realms of the conscious and subconscious. Our challenge was to visually depict this journey, enhancing the intention of the choreography and using lighting symbolically. 

Can you tell us how you used lighting to portray the living world and the underworld?

Varied hues and intensities distinguished the living world with warm, vibrant tones. The underworld was draped in cool, shadowy lighting, employing contrast to evoke distinct or unknown feelings. Beams of light coming through the inside of our set/wreck boat or moving from the top downwards created a supernatural atmosphere. The video projection sometimes followed the choreography, while at other times, it created a second depth – a deeper layer of interpretation.

Were there any challenges you faced while developing the projection and lighting design, either technical or conceptual?

The major challenge was time…: to be ready on time. 

Technical challenges involved the mapping of the boat for the projection. Also, to place the lighting equipment in positions that would not create a visual nuisance, sometimes even sacrificing a good angle position. 

Can you tell us more about the backdrop of the projections and performance, the ship Logos? Was it always meant to be a part of the narrative or did you have to adjust the lighting design to include it later in the design process?

It was our deliberate decision to position our stage directly in front of the ship Logos. Logos was a significant partner and the ideal set, it was chosen for its decadent ghostly appearance, symbolic name, and its proximity to the sea and its surroundings. Additionally, the ship’s textured surface served as the perfect projection screen. At times, the lighting created an illusion of emanating from within, giving the ship a supernatural vitality. In other moments, video projections on the ship added a multi-dimensional aspect to its personality or provided a serene backdrop, creating a darkened depth for the choreography.

After winning the “Lighting Design of the Year” in 2021 with the new lighting of the “Acropolis of Athens and other monuments”, congratulations on receiving the “Entertainment Lighting Design of the Year 2023. What does it mean to you personally to be awarded for this project?

Two years after that incredible honor, receiving the 2023 “Entertainment Lighting Design of the Year“ is another great honor, and it holds personal significance due to its strong emotional connection to Eleusis, the ancestral home of my father’s side family. The project was unique in many ways, addressing both personal and universal issues, and it marks a new cycle of artistic expression for me alongside Mystery 89, a Light Art Installation. I am immensely grateful to LIT and the jury for this amazing recognition!

“Persephone Reconsiders Her Fate”. Photo Credits: Gavriil Papadiotis / John Stathis.

How do you see the future of stage lighting design evolving? Do you have any advice for young lighting designers who would love to follow in your footsteps?

Stage lighting is poised to integrate more advanced technologies, and digitized realities, elevating immersive experiences, and illusionary spaces. 

I would advise the young generation of lighting designers not to blindly follow technology or use it solely to impress, but instead to harness technology to create magic with light, emotionally move the audience, inspire people mentally, and elevate their spirit. Because lighting has the power to do such things! Light is a universal language that connects us all!

Last, what should we wish you for 2024?

I strongly wish for peace and for the enlightenment of the people who govern the world. I also wish for the inner light of each one of us to stay lit, guiding us away from darkness and into the beauty of life.


View The Project.