Alexey Burykin, publisher:
The light shows us the world, and in this capacity is an inherent element of the architecture, as the lighting, both natural and artificial, defines the visual and emotional perception of objects and spaces.
In my years of working on the lighting design market, I had ample opportunities to see for myself that even with massive budgets and everyone’s interest in creating quality lighting plan, it’s very difficult to achieve the high standard of implementation. Quality is always the result and proof of professional culture, which in the case of interdisciplinary work is primarily manifested in the ability to find common language and make joint decisions. A successful project is born at the intersection of the deep knowledge of light as an instrument and material of architecture, and the skills that enable shifting this percepective to practice. Working at the current level of technological progress, we can unite the key factors of success only by meeting each other halfway and attempting to see the situation from the other participants’ point of view — and the experience of the best teams and projects is a constant proof of this.
The choice of museum as the subject of our first conversation wasn’t made at random: the level of artistic and functional objectives that require solutions in designing museum and exhibition lighting will deliver us from the obligation to provide a detailed rationale for the magazine’s subject, and you — from any doubts about the necessity of studying light and visual culture in depth.
Elina Lobatskaya, editor-in-chief:
Light is the principal, albeit often unrecognized hero of the museum architecture. It is directly connected with two of museum’s essential functions — to store and to display. The quality of the light environment in respect to exposition is primarily about the exact conveyance of the exhibits’ visual parameters and protection of the collection from damaging emissions. Nonetheless, it would be incorrect to focus the conversation about light in museums on the discussion of the exposition lighting’s technical issues.
We come to the museum to look — but not at the exhibits. We come to get in touch with the ideal world — and to use somebody else’s vision for that, increadible as it may seem. The polyphony of visual protocols, bequeathed to us by the eyewitnesses of truth throughout the ages, makes the museum a kind of a virtual archive of the humanity’s dream of the harmony. In this regard, every exhibit is just a hyperlink, not the source itself. Access to the latter is provided by architecture of light with its unique ability to open up the spaces: by taking on the role of a guide to the beautiful nowhere, where the eye evolves, it subtly gifts us with a rare advantage of seeing instead of simply looking.