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David Rubenstein Forum

Prize(s) Winners in Community Building Lighting
Company Tillotson Design Associates
Lead Designers Suzan Tillotson, Jacqui Cacan, Thomas Bergeron (formerly of TDA)
Architecture Company Diller Scofidio + Renfro (Design) and Brininstool + Lynch (Associate Architect)
Client University of Chicago
Photo Credits Brett Beyer and Patrik Argast
Completion Date 9/01/2020
Project Location Chicago, IL
Project Link View
Company Link View
Entry Description

Lighting uses restraint and careful organization within architectural reveals to elevate the architecture, like a finely tailored suit. Quantity of high efficacy lighting is minimal and discrete to allow the richness of material texture, but also lends programmatic order.

Luminaires are tailored into the architectural language to highlight strong vertical materials for a strong visual impact, bolstering the iconic identity of the building on campus. Lobby and gathering spaces are softly illuminated with low-glare accentlights and wallwash fixtures. In contrast, lensed linear fixtures in meeting rooms announce the building’s primary function with honesty and rigor. Special dining and lecture spaces distinguish themselves with an abundance of warmth: wood finishes comfortably emanate light from well-shielded high output lights. Dimmable LED lighting from various manufacturers were used, yet the color quality is consistent throughout, the product of a diligent specification process.

Despite significant structural challenges, the zinc shiplap façade is gently illuminated from only a few locations. Detailed 3D view studies informed how to successfully elongate the spill of the interior light with each light employing multiple optical adjustments and varying beam spreads.
Company Description

Tillotson Design Associates, founded in 2004, is a WBE lighting design consultancy based in New York City. A diverse staff with backgrounds in architecture, interior design, and theater, including several LEED accredited professionals, combine talents to create exemplary work. Together, our principals provide over 80 years of lighting expertise. The launch of Tillotson Design Associates came just after Ms. Tillotson completed lighting designs for the Seattle Central Public Library and Prada Beverly Hills with the Office for Metropolitan Architecture.