Alexey Burykin, publisher:
You have in your hands the second issue of MOST, a magazine devoted to lighting design as an independent discipline. The magazine’s main goal is to showcase the world’s best practices in lighting design’s development as a creative field and an integral part of the process of architectural design and construction, and to formulate an agenda for Russian specialists in this field. It is no secret that lighting design in Russia is a very young discipline which is still finding its feet and needs active popularization. In order to demonstrate as fully as possible lighting design’s importance in shaping the image of both individual buildings and cities as a whole, we have dedicated this issue not to a particular type of object or space but to the sweeping, multifaceted theme ‘Light in the City’.
Light is the creative energy which during the hours of darkness makes our cities safe, convenient, and visually attractive. It is our conviction that only when lighting design is treated as a dialogue between researchers, designers, and practicians, can this discipline develop in a harmonious, well-rounded manner. It is as a platform for such a dialogue that we conceived and publish MOST magazine.
We began putting this issue together at the beginning of 2020 with the intention of bringing it out at the beginning of the summer. Our original schedule was transformed by the pandemic and the accompanying quarantine measures. And yet it is clear to all of us that neither the pandemic nor the enforced restriction of communication have made the topic of forming cities’ luminous image any less relevant. This is why we decided to continue working on our magazine. In this issue we have gathered together all kinds of different approaches to creating Light in the City. We hope that you — our fellow lighting designers, architects, and urbanists, and all who are not indifferent to issues involved in developing cities – will find MOST2 a useful source of both information and inspiration.
Anna Martovitskaya, editor-in-chief:
In 2019, at the International Cultural Forum in St Petersburg, I was asked by Alexey Burykin, publisher of MOST, to be executive editor for the second issue of this magazine. In our very first conversation it became clear that our visions of the theme for this issue absolutely coincided: without any attempt to conspire with one another, we both — Aleksey, as an expert in the field of lighting and the founder of engineering company QPRO, which realizes projects in important urban locations, and I, as an architecture critic and an editor whose main field of study is precisely works of architecture situated in cities — proposed looking at lighting in terms not of individual structures but of the environment of the megalopolis as a whole. This was the birth of ‘Light in the City’, a theme which is universal in a positive sense since it allows us to look at illuminating urban structures and spaces from all kinds of different points of view. Also important is that during the months of self-isolation this theme has, far from losing its relevance, acquired additional resonance: light is one of the few instruments available to city-dwellers with which to express their feelings and relationship of solidarity.
The diversity of scales for working with light in the context of the city is reflected in the sections for this issue. Master Plan looks at projects involving overall lighting plans. Place Making analyses cases where project transformation is achieved through illumination. Spotlight examines luminous installations and temporary structures. ‘Lighting as art’ is the theme for our conversation with the three artists featured in Insight, while ‘lighting as profession’ is the subject of the interviews in Expert. Leading researchers, lighting designers, architects: all in all, this issue has opinions expressed by more than 30 experts. There are more than 40 projects analyzed in this issue. Some are covered in great detail, while others are merely mentioned in passing — thus forming, we hope, a picture that is as all-encompassing and diverse as possible. A picture that shows how the nocturnal image of a modern city should look in real life.