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King's College Chapel, Cambridge

Prize(s) Winners in Heritage Lighting
Company Atelier Ten
Lead Designers Elga Niemann & Jonathan Gittins
Architecture Company Caroe Architecture
Interior Design Company none
Client King's College, Cambridge
Photo Credits Shatanik Mandal
Other Credits Project Manager: Benedict Cadbury, Lampholder Lighting Design
Completion Date Autumn 2020
Project Location Cambridge, UK
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Entry Description
This historic and internationally renowned Grade 1 listed Chapel features the world’s largest fan vaulted ceiling.

The brief was to design a state of the art, flexible interior lighting scheme without any permanent fixings.

The chapel does not feature a triforium, but rather a 20m sheer wall providing no obvious opportunities for concealing and fixing lighting equipment. To overcome this challenge we designed custom luminaires with a bespoke clamping mechanism. These were discreetly mounted within the stonework ribs, thereby concealed behind columns in the main view towards the altar.

The luminaires feature multiple adjustable spotlight heads to highlight the beauty of the vault and provide flexible lighting scenes for Services and performances. The spotlights use tuneable white LED allowing the warmth of light to be adjusted during the day and to suit different types of Service.

The scheme also includes architectural lighting of the side chapels and dedicated artwork lighting for important paintings including the Adoration of the Magi by Rubens.

A wireless DMX control system means no additional cabling needed to be installed; this provides simple user-friendly scene selection from a touchscreen. The control system is also equipped with an interface that allows the BBC to connect to the system and take control of the lighting when filming the Christmas Eve Carol Service.