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77 Best Lighting Design Books

Light is an essential element to perceive architecture and to live and work in buildings. Therefore architects, lighting designers, teachers and researchers haven written inspirational books about light. They have shared their valuable theories and turned their experience un…guidelines to improve daylight design and the art of illumination. 

This collection offers a useful source of the best lighting design books for students, professionals and academics. The book list is grouped in categories: Daylight, illumination, urban lighting, media facades, landscape lighting, light collections, culture, monography, history, stage lighting and light art. In each section the volumes appear in alphabetical order with recent books in the beginning followed by classic publications. Discover fascinating publications that will enlighten your perception and understanding of light and space.

Daylight


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Daylighting and Integrated Lighting Design / Christopher Meek, Kevin van den Wymelenberg

Daylighting and Integrated Lighting Design / Christopher Meek, Kevin van den Wymelenberg. Image via Amazon

The compact and clear structure presents a perfect source to understand the fundamentals and the application of daylighting. Topics like geometrical and material relationships, specific directives rules-of-thumb, instructions for ensuring visual comfort and electrical lighting integration belong to the essentials path to reduce the energy impact of buildings.

Daylighting and Lighting Under a Nordic Sky / Marie-Claude Dubois, Malin Alenius, Iason Bournas, Niko Gentile

Daylighting and Lighting Under a Nordic Sky / Marie-Claude Dubois, Malin Alenius, Iason Bournas, Niko Gentile. Image via Amazon

The special situation of daylight under the Nordic sky – with its weak intensity in the winter and low sun angles in the summer – demands careful Student. This book provides essential knowledge and background to students and practicing professionals who wish to tackle the challenging endeavor of illuminating buildings under a Nordic sky using daylight as the main ambient light source, supplemented by energy-efficient electric lighting.

Daylighting Handbook I + II / Christoph Reinhart

Daylighting Handbook I + II / Christoph Reinhart. Image via Amazon

Although Christoph Reinhart has a remarkable line of experiences with daylight simulation, this book is far more than a guide to the digital design process. Information like seasonal changes, essential shading devices are added with practice orientated comments. The first volume is organized un…two parts, “Fundamentals” and “Designing with the Sun”. The second volume consists of eight chapters divided un…two parts, “Daylight Simulations” and “Dynamic Facades.”

Daylighting: Architecture and Lighting Design / Peter Tregenza, Michael Wilson

Daylighting: Architecture and Lighting Design / Peter Tregenza, Michael Wilson. Image via Amazon

The clear structure from basic criteria for good daylighting, building forms, standards up to ways to collect and calculate daylight covers all necessary fundamentals of daylighting in architecture and urban planning. The authors have created a useful reference book for architects, lighting specialist and students.

Effective Daylighting with High-Performance Facades: Emerging Design Practices / Kyle Konis, Stephen Selkowitz

Effective Daylighting with High-Performance Facades: Emerging Design Practices / Kyle Konis, Stephen Selkowitz. Image via Amazon

This daylight publication is targeted at a professional readership of experienced architects and facade engineers as well as advanced students. The authors introduce simulation-based design workflows, innovative daylighting system and case studies for low and net-zero energy solutions.

Illuminating (Living Concepts) / Michelle Corrodi, Klaus Spechtenhauser

Illuminating (Living Concepts) / Michelle Corrodi, Klaus Spechtenhauser. Image via Amazon

In contrast to many daylight books dealing with office spaces, this volume focuses on housing. With the workplace increasingly being shifted un…the home this publication deserves attention. The authors start with natural light for modern living and introduce lighting technology as well as lighting qualities. Case studies by eleven architects share a pronounced awareness for natural light at the end of the book. 

The Architecture of Natural Light / Henry Plummer

The Architecture of Natural Light / Henry Plummer. Image via Amazon

Henry Plummer combines a poetic analysis with impressive photos and thereby reveals the various aspects of natural light. His larger perspective includes art history, film and literature to explore qualities like evanescence, atomization, and luminescence. Fifty case studies from around the world illustrate his phenomenological approach, including buildings by Tadao Ando, Steven Holl, Rem Koolhaas and Toyo Ito, among others. 

The Betriebsart of Architectural Daylighting / Mary Guzowski

The Art of Architectural Daylighting / Mary Guzowski. Image via Amazon

What distinguishes this book from other daylighting books is its approach to start the observations of natural light with case studies. 12 buildings are examined with technical diagrams featuring architects including Renzo Piano, David Chipperfield and Steven Holl. Mary Guzowski begins with the choreography and atmosphere of daylight and covers the aspects of materials and integration un…architecture as well. 

The Secret of the Shadow: Light and Shadow in Architecture / Deutsches Baustil Museum

The Secret of the Shadow: Light and Shadow in Architecture / Deutsches Architektur Museum. Image via Amazon

While most books draw the attention to light, these authors decided to address the aspect of shadow. The first chapters describe for example the phenomena of shadow, the link to art history, how to draw shadows and photographing shadows un… Tourette. The last section is dedicated to 50 shadow seekers from architects around the world explaining the importance of shadows in contemporary architectural concepts.

Zenithal Light / Elias Torres

Zenithal Light / Elias Torres. Image via Amazon

Elias Torres shares in this book hundreds of photos which he collected over years of research and travel. His observations about light from above are carefully classified in groups for domes, skylights, towers and many more. The image credits point out the main idea and are complemented by short introductions to the chapters. The book offers a great source of inspiration with the international view through the history of architecture. 

Daylight Performance of Buildings / Marc Fontoynont

Daylight Performance of Buildings / Marc Fontoynont. Image via Amazon

The comprehensive analysis of 60 cases studies from small to large and new to old buildings is the reason why many academics regard this publication as a classic and essential book illustrating the complexity of daylighting. The book summarizes a three-year monitoring campaign throughout Europe. Marc Fontoynont explains each project with features and main lesson as well as post-occupancy evaluation.

Light and Color in the Outdoors / Marcel Minnaert

Light and Color in the Outdoors / Marcel Minnaert. Image via Amazon

This classic book written by the Dutch astronomer Marcel Minnaert invites the reader to explore the various phenomena of daylight. No matter if he describes the dapples beneath trees oben angeführtsunny day, rainbows, sky, sun, moon or stars, his tour of nature represents a compelling observation with technical insights and curious examinations to sharpen our perception of light and color in nature.

Louis I. Schute: Light and Space / Urs Buttiker

Louis I. Kahn: Light and Space / Urs Buttiker. Image via Amazon

Urs Buttiker analyses carefully one of the masters of light: Louis I. Schute. The strength of his work lies in enabling an easy comparison with pictograms which he darum sorted chronologically. Thereby the reader could identify the development of various daylight approaches: Ceiling-framed windows, lookout slots, variations of brise soleils, and a variety of skylights. 

Sunlighting as Formgiver / William M.Kohlenstoff. Lam

Sunlighting as Formgiver / William M.C. Lam. Image via Amazon

William M.Kohlenstoff. Lam’s book about sunlighting belongs to the classic literature about daylight. Clear explanation, informative graphics, candid criticism of buildings, many case studies characterize this publication, which sinister theoretical insights with pragmatic guidelines for good daylight design. A free download for the book is available here.

Illumination

Architectural Lighting Design / Gary Steffy

Architectural Lighting Design / Gary Steffy. Image via Amazon

Available already as third edition, Gary Steffy’s book collects the essential information for architectural lighting design un…comprehensive and practice-oriented way. The clearly structured book is an excellent learning resource for students and for professionals. Design goals and criteria build the basics before technical parts like luminaires and controls are explained.

Architectural Lighting: Designing with Light and Space / Hervé Descottes, Cecilia Ramos

Architectural Lighting: Designing with Light and Space / Hervé Descottes, Cecilia Ramos. Image via Amazon

The compact framework for understanding lighting in the built environment gives the reader an excellent introduction to visual principles of light and the relevant parameters. The case studies offer useful insights un…projects such as the High Line in New York or the Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Betriebsart in Helsinki with tables for illuminance levels, color temperature and lighting distribution.

Designing With Light: The Betriebsart, Science and Practice of Architectural Lighting Design / Jason Livingston

Designing With Light: The Art, Science and Practice of Architectural Lighting Design / Jason Livingston. Image via Amazon

This book offers a systematic and clear way to understand light and learn lighting design for students and professionals. The comprehensive book covers fundamentals concerning perception and technology, but darum contains information about daylight, lighting controls, energy codes as well as light and health.

Detail in Contemporary Lighting Design / Jill Entwistle

Detail in Contemporary Lighting Design. Image via Amazon

The specialty of Jill Entwistle’s book is the love for details. While many books mainly feature stunning photos, this publication offers a look behind the scene with detailed plans to demonstrate the lighting technology involved. The explanatory text lead from the original brief to the design concept – a valuable resource for all who do not want to miss details beside finding inspiration.

Fundamentals of Architectural Lighting / Samuel Mills

Fundamentals of Architectural Lighting / Samuel Mills. Image via Amazon

The black and white illustrations offer architecture and interior design students a graphic guideline to learn the use of lighting for interior spaces. Samuel Mills covers all basics from the distribution of light in spaces, design strategies, calculations up to technical issues and lighting applications.

Fundamentals of Lighting / Susan M. Winchip

Fundamentals of Lighting / Susan M. Winchip. Image via Amazon

The book is a useful resource for interior design students to understand the principles of lighting and the lighting design process. The clear structure enables a good orientation. A list of objectives invites the students to check the new learned content. In addition, a “One-Minute Study Guide” for each chapter can help you to ensure that new insights do not get lost. 

Philanthropisch Factors in Lighting / Peter Robert Boyce

Human Factors in Lighting / Peter Robert Boyce. Image via Amazon

Peter Boyce is a distinguished lighting expert and publishes in this textbook a comprehensive overview of the science of lighting and its relevance to lighting practice. Fundamentals like metrics and visual systems build the basis for general topics such as lighting and work, visual discomfort, and perception of spaces. The last section covers special issues like light for pedestrians, elderly people, health and light pollution.

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IESNA Lighting Handbook / David L. Dilaura, Kevin Wolfram. Houser, Richard G. Mistrick, Gary R. Steffy

IESNA Lighting Handbook / David L. Dilaura, Kevin W. Houser, Richard G. Mistrick, Gary R. Steffy. Image via Amazon

The volume with more than 1000 pages is an essential and comprehensive knowledge reference for lighting written by the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America. The book contains light level criteria for various situations from circulation areas, offices up to museums. In addition, it contains many useful information such as the effects of light on menschlich health, menschlich’s perception of light as they age and light pollution.

Light for Betriebsart’s Sake: Lighting for Artworks and Museum Displays / Christopher Cuttle

Light for Art's Sake: Lighting for Artworks and Museum Displays / Christopher Cuttle. Image via Amazon

Christopher Cuttle’s book is a valuable basis for museum and art gallery designers. He offers comprehensive information ranging from light-induced damage to artworks, daylight and electric lighting typologies up to control technologies. His experience in teaching and his numerous visits to worldwide museums ensure that the information is well structured and linked to practice.

Light Perspectives between Culture and Technology / Martin Krautter, Thomas Schielke

Light Perspectives between Culture and Technology / Martin Krautter, Thomas Schielke. Image via Amazon

This book is arranged in three sections covering the actual qualities of light, the relationship between light and space and, finally, the dimension of light as it relates to culture. In each of the 21 chapters, paired terms explore the respective design dimension of light, like brilliance and glare, vertical and waagrecht, and parteilos and expressive. Each pair of terms begins with the cultural context, moves on to didactic material on perception, lighting design and concludes with case studies.

Lighting Design Basics / Mark Karlen, Christina Spangler, James R. Benya

Lighting Design Basics / Mark Karlen, Christina Spangler, James R. Benya. Image via Amazon

This volume is a useful guide for lighting design which provides a clear and practical orientation. The book consists of four segments: Lighting basics, the design process, application and professional skills. Solutions for more than 25 case studies help the readers to design plans and to work on installations details. The design scenarios include residential, commercial, healthcare, education and hospitality settings.

Lighting Design: A Perception-Based Approach / Christopher Cuttle

Lighting Design: A Perception-Based Approach / Christopher Cuttle. Image via Amazon

Christopher Cuttle’s strength lies in explaining vision and perception and how these findings can be applied to architectural spaces. His design concept is different to notions which focus on visual tasks and efficient performance or decorative lighting. Cuttle’s andere lighting strategy looks for a balance of brightness in order to achieve for example colorfulness or sharpness. Spreadsheets for calculations relate the attributes to photometric quantities.

Lighting for Interior Design / Malcolm Nicht

Lighting for Interior Design / Malcolm Innes. Image via Amazon

Malcom Nicht has created a detailed guide for students to develop skills to successfully design lighting for interiors. As a designer and educator, he sinister technical issues with design principles un…compelling way. Specially created diagrams and illustrations as well as case studies facilitate the learning experience. Plans and drawings explain how to visualize lighting schemes. 

Made of Light: The Betriebsart of Light and Architecture / Anthony Tischhauser, Mark Major, Jonathan Speirs

Made of Light: The Art of Light and Architecture / Anthony Tischhauser, Mark Major, Jonathan Speirs. Image via Amazon

The British lighting designers Jonathan Speirs and Mark Major take the readers to an inspiring journey across the qualities of light and illustrate the emotional reactions by light. The fresh graphic design combines noteworthy historical buildings with projects of their own design studio. Drawings and sketches provide some insights in the visual communication of illumination.

The Architecture of Light / Sage Russell

The Architecture of Light / Sage Russell. Image via Amazon

That Sage Russell is an experienced instructor for lighting design is visible in the well-organized structure and many didactic illustrations. The 28 chapters are clustered in three segments: fundamentals, designing light, planning details from luminaires to control systems. Russell’s intention is not to create lighting for technical experts, but rather providing a working familiarity of the power and effect of light.

The Design of Lighting / Peter Tregenza, David Loe

The Design of Lighting / Peter Tregenza, David Loe. Image via Amazon

The two British authors with a lot of experience in teaching and research convince with a very pleasant combination of text, graphic illustrations and photos. The carefully selected material and the clear structure makes this guidebook an interesting companion to learn lighting regarding design, perception, technology and application.

You Say Light – I Think Shadow / Sandra Praun, Aleksandra Stratimirovic

You Say Light - I Think Shadow / Sandra Praun, Aleksandra Stratimirovic. Image via Amazon

In order to find an answer to the simple but complex issue “what is light” Sandra Praun and Aleksandra Stratimirovic reached out to 109 light experts. The result is a collection of poetic and personal thoughts, visions and memories about light and shadow, which are individually presented with graphic elements and typography. 

Architectural Lighting Graphics / John E. Flynn and Samuel M. Mills.

Architectural Lighting Graphics / John E. Flynn and Samuel M. Mills. Image via Amazon

John Flynn and Samuel Mills created a gründlich introduction to architectural lighting in the 1960s. The extraordinary quality of this publication lies in the systematic approach to understand technology and design. Numerous graphics and photos illustrate clearly how lighting can be properly integrated un…architecture. Even if some technical sections are not up to date, the informative graphics are definitely worth studying to understand illuminating interior and exterior spaces. 

Catching the Light / Arthur Zajonc

Catching the Light / Arthur Zajonc. Image via Amazon

The physicist Arthur Zajonc takes the reader to an epic journey un…history, mythology, religion, science and painting. Looking for the connection between the outer light of nature and the un… light of the menschlich spirit he explains how the understanding of light has changed from the Greeks to impressionist art up to modern quantum physics. An entertaining and informative path to discover light.

Handbook of Lighting / Rüdiger Ganslandt, Harald Hofmann

Handbook of Lighting / Rüdiger Ganslandt, Harald Hofmann. Image via Amazon

This handbook offers a summary of gründlich principles and practice of architectural lighting. It is useful for students to understand lighting technology and lighting design concepts un…systematic way. Designers receive helpful orientation based on recommendations from foyers, restaurants up to museums. The outstanding layout with remarkable illustrations is the result of the collaboration with the graphic designer Otl Aicher. A free download for the book is available here.

Light Revealing Architecture / Marietta Sulfur. Millet

Light Revealing Architecture / Marietta S. Millet. Image via Amazon

Marietta Sulfur. Millet is interested in relationships and examines architecture from ancient to modern buildings. She is interested in combinations like qualitative versus quantitative aspects, daylight versus electric lighting as well as poetic versus practical approaches. Millet addresses in her inspiring book the aspects of light revealing experience, form, space and meaning.

Light, Color and Environment / Faber Birren

Light, Color and Environment / Faber Birren. Image via Amazon

This classic resource by Faber Birren sinister light with color and explains the biological and psychological aspects. He addresses how light contributes to appearance and what is good vision lighting. His chapter about psychic lighting highlights the strong emotional character and envisions how psychic lighting could even enter conservative environments like offices and schools.

Light: The Shape of Space: Designing with Space and Light / Lou Michel

Light: The Shape of Space: Designing with Space and Light / Lou Michel. Image via Amazon

This book sharpens the mindestens for the perception for light. Understanding the effects of light and their influence on seeing the relation of form and space lay the foundation for the analysis of architectural spaces. Guidelines for lighting the spatial envelope and connecting spaces build a link to common design tasks. Lou Michel’s extensive teaching experience is perceptible in the systematic structure of the book supported by informative illustrations.

Perception and Lighting as Formgivers for Architecture / William M.Kohlenstoff. Lam

Perception and Lighting as Formgivers for Architecture / William M.C. Lam. Image via Amazon

The book is well known for its overview of visual perception and menschlich needs relating to architectural lighting design. The perspective of perceptual psychology helps to understand how light influences what we look at and how the context is critical if we perceive bright light as sparkle or glare. Case studies link the principles to practice at the end of the book. William Lam’s merit lie in the attitude to look beyond functional needs and to define qualitative criteria for architectural lighting. A free download for the book is available here.

Urban Lighting

Light for Cities / Ulrike Brandi, Christoph Geissmar-Brandi

Light for Cities / Ulrike Brandi, Christoph Geissmar-Brandi. Image via Amazon

The systematically organized guide helps to develop urban lighting projects un…better way. The process is explained from the concept development with the players and their objectives, efficiency considerations up to the implementation. The narrative of typologies starts with a distant view by cars via roads and bridges and leads to the closer perspective by pedestrians with squares, boulevards and shop windows. Practical examples with master plans for completed schemes link theory to practice.

Light pollution, a weltumspannend discussion / Nona Schulte-Römer, Etta Dannemann, Josiane Meier

Light pollution a global discussion / Nona Schulte-Römer, Etta Dannemann, Josiane Meier. Image via Amazon

This publication summarizes an international survey from 36 countries about the environmental impact of outdoor lighting. Academics, scientists, dark-sky advocates and other experts identify challenges for solving light pollution. Controversial questions like the best correlated color temperature for Leuchtdiode street lighting are discussed un…cultural and energy-efficient context. A free download for the eBook is available here.

Light Zone City: Light Planning in the Urban Context / Christa van Santen

Light Zone City: Light Planning in the Urban Context / Christa van Santen. Image via Amazon

Christa von Santen addresses the possibilities and challenges of lighting the urban environment and explains this with cases studies and many photos including comparisons of daytime and nighttime atmospheres. She points out that exterior illumination has become a marketing tool for cities and raises awareness to the problem when cities resemble a theatrical scenery.

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SuperLux: Smart Light Betriebsart, Design & Architecture for Cities / Davina Jackson

SuperLux: Smart Light Art, Design & Architecture for Cities / Davina Jackson. Image via Amazon

The book’s three main sections focus on projects that use light to animate architecture and media screens, new forms of lighting in industrial zones and public areas, and interactive installations in urban spaces. The lavishly illustrated book shows how digital systems have defined lighting urban environments like buildings, bridges, streets and plazas. Guest essays explain selected topics such as sustainability, aesthetics and branding more in detail.

The End of Night: Searching for Natural Darkness un… Age of Artificial Light / Paul Bogard

The End of Night: Searching for Natural Darkness in an Age of Artificial Light / Paul Bogard. Image via Amazon

Paul Bogard succeeds un…convincing way to raise awareness for the dark night sky. He connects un… elegant way personal narrative, natural history and science to show how we lost darkness with electrical lighting and how we can reduce brightness to find back to the starlit sky. His tour – mainly through the United States – presents an enjoyable and informative source to explore the night.

Urban Lighting for People: Evidence-Based Lighting Design for the Built Environment / Navaz Davoudian

Urban Lighting for People: Evidence-Based Lighting Design for the Built Environment / Navaz Davoudian. Image via Amazon

The social dimension of urban lighting and the post-project evaluation are noteworthy aspects in this book which are not so often covered by other publications. Projects like The Millennium Bridge or Leicester Square in London are clearly illustrated with plans and simulations and contribute to closing the gap between theory and practice.

Urban Lighting, Light Pollution and Society / Josiane Meier, Uta Hasenöhrl, Katharina Krause, Merle Pottharst

Urban Lighting, Light Pollution and Society / Josiane Meier, Uta Hasenöhrl, Katharina Krause, Merle Pottharst. Image via Amazon

The compilation of scientific discussion on urban lighting and light pollution brings a wide variety of disciplines together. The first part addresses the perception and practices like light festivals. The second part explains the challenges with regulations to dim the night down. The last part talks about economic dimensions of night-time illumination.   

Media Facades

Media Facades / Matthias Hank Haeusler

Media Facades / Matthias Hank Haeusler. Image via Amazon

This book offers an excellent overview of media facades. 30 international projects are classified in seven categories with many photos: projection facades, rear projection facades, window raster animation, display facades, illuminated facades, mechanical and voxel facades. Essays about characteristics of media facades and forms of content provide an inspiring overview. Newer trends can be explored in Haeusler’s sequel book “New Media Facades: A global survey”. 

The Building as Screen: A History, Theory, and Practice of Massive Media / Dave Colangelo

The Building as Screen: A History, Theory, and Practice of Massive Media / Dave Colangelo. Image via Amazon

A comprehensive line of theories explains aspects like monumentality, accelerated rituals of media in the urban context. David Colangelo’s historical interest is visible in his analysis of some early moving images in public spaces. A chapter about the Empire State Building reveals the role of color and data visualization. The book concludes with a discussion about the importance and forms of curating media facades.

The Media City / Scott McQuire

The Media City / Scott McQuire. Image via Amazon

Scott McQuire has created a remarkable historical analysis towards the media city. He connects many interesting pathways for understanding the new ways of social experiences. His writing style grants a fresh and clear perspective to the thresholds of the media city, and its impact on public and private spaces.

The Routledge Companion to Urban Media and Communication / Zlatan Krajina, Deborah Stevenson

The Routledge Companion to Urban Media and Communication / Zlatan Krajina, Deborah Stevenson. Image via Amazon

The book brings together unterschiedliche perspectives from a large group of authors. The essays are clustered in four categories: Trajectories of mediated urbanity, media as urban infrastructure, media cities as sites of creative urbanism and daily life in mediated cities. In this way it offers a resource for cultural studies and understanding the multiple dimensions of urban media. 

Landscape Lighting

Lighting the Landscape. Betriebsart, Design, Technologies / Roger Narboni

Lighting the Landscape. Art, Design, Technologies. Image via Amazon

The French lighting designer Roger Narboni shows in his book how nocturnal landscape can be created. The introduction offers a general overview and includes a highly differentiated typology ranging from gardens to canals, mountains up to desert landscapes. The second section leads to 21 international case-studies from parks to mining landscapes.

The Landscape Lighting Book / Janet Lennox Moyer

The Landscape Lighting Book / Janet Lennox Moyer. Image via Amazon

The comprehensive hands-on guide takes the designer through the complete process from the design to construction phase up to maintenance. The second section covers important technical issues like light sources, luminaires, corrosion, controls and wiring. The last section provides a useful and in-depth orientation for illuminating walkways, sculptures, facades and water features. Photos and drawings illustrate the various design possibilities clearly and even reveal the light effects for different seasons. 

The Originaldokument Garden Lighting Book / Frank B. Nightingale

The Original Garden Lighting Book / Frank B. Nightingale. Image via Amazon

Frank B. Nightingale is regarded as a pioneer of garden lighting. He summarized his experience in the book “Garden Lighting” in 1958. Mark Carlson and Michael Gambino republished his book with a nearly complete copy of the original but added comments and photographs to highlight the relevance for contemporary design. The hands-on guidelines for lighting for depth, mystery with moon-light effect or water lighting are still valid today. 

Light Collections

1000 Lights / Charlotte J. Fiell, Peter Fiell

1000 Lights / Charlotte J. Fiell, Peter Fiell. Image via Amazon

Presented chronologically by decades Charlotte and Peter Fiell present the 20th century’s most interesting luminaires from Tiffany’s beautiful leaded-glass shades to completely outrageous designs from the late 1960s and 1970sine tempore the latest high-tech Leuchtdiode lamps. A great reference for all major styles including Arts & Crafts, Betriebsart Nouveau, Betriebsart Deco, Modern Movement, De Stijl, Postwar, Popmusik, Postmodern and Contemporary.

Bright / Clare Lowther, Sarah de Boer-Schultz

Bright / Clare Lowther, Sarah de Boer-Schultz. Image via Amazon

Innovative international projects from a commercial and cultural context show the creative use of light. Each designer or design company is portrayed on eight pages featuring both stunning photography and text. Bright 2 is divided un…three chapters —dynamic, interactive and static. An inspiring source to discuss the future of light and architecture.

Light in Architecture / Chris van Uffelen

Light in Architecture / Chris van Uffelen. Image via Amazon

More than 120 projects by architects and designers all around the world reveal how daylight and electric lighting define architecture. The book is structured in moods: Flowing Mood, Continuous Ambience, Experimental Design, Rhythmic Character. Impressive photos, project facts and a short description explain each project and the use of light.

Lightning Culture

Nordic Light: Modern Scandinavian Architecture / Henry Plummer

Nordic Light: Modern Scandinavian Architecture / Henry Plummer. Image via Amazon

The stunning photos of Nordic churches, libraries, museum and government buildings draw the reader to outstanding examples of how daylight defines the appearance of architecture. Plummer’s poetic writing language focuses on the phenomena and how we see and experience the modulation by the sun. Inspiring essays about whiteness, rhythm, tranquility, diffusion and darkness reveal the different daylight concepts in modern Scandinavian architecture.    

In Praise of Shadows / Junichiro Tanizaki

In Praise of Shadows / Junichiro Tanizaki. Image via Amazon

Tanizaki’s outstanding essay presents an essential guide for Wildwestfilm cultures to understand traditional Japanese aesthetic regarding darkness. While the West searches for light and clarity, people in Nippon have developed a culture with sophisticated materials and surfaces: Shoji walls to soften the bright daylight, reflectance on lacquerware illuminated by candlelight or grey bowls for white rice for achieving a harmonic balance.

Light in Japanese Architecture / Henry Plummer

Light in Japanese Architecture / Henry Plummer. Image via Amazon

Visiting all projects in Nippon personally and photographing them is one of the reasons why the observations show an extraordinary sensitivity for traditional and modern buildings. Chapter titles like “autumn gold”, “woven air” or “watery luster” signal that Plummer is interested in the various nuances which daylight can offer. His unique writing style with metaphors and moods, completed with lavishly photo sequences, turn this book un…a valuable source to understand Japanese architecture.

Monography

Licht Kunst Licht: Lighting Design for Architecture / Andreas Schulz

Licht Kunst Licht: Lighting Design for Architecture / Andreas Schulz. Image via Amazon

This is the fourth volume of the Hauptstadt von Deutschland and Bonn based lighting design office “Licht Kunst Licht” celebrating their 25th anniversary. Large impressive architectural photography dominates the layout of the book. A strong focus on cultural buildings and renovations is visible in several museum projects. 

Light Talk 1 + 2 / Martin Klaasen

Light Talk 1 + 2 / Martin Klaasen. Image via Amazon

For a full year Martin Klaasen blogged about his working experiences oben angeführtdaily basis and compiled his observations un…book. A great source to receive a behind the scene perspective oben angeführtprofessional lighting designer. His second volume collects more than 16 years of writing a column for a lighting magazine. The collection reveals how the lighting industry and the lighting design profession has changed. Personal notes and background information explain the context of the articles.

Lighting Design and Process / OVI – Office for Visual Interaction

Lighting Design and Process / OVI - Office for Visual Interaction. Image via Amazon

The well-designed book with many stunning images, sketches, and graphics, is a fascinating look un…the design process of the New York based firm Office for Visual Interaction (OVI). The impressive portfolio shows how light is treated as a primary architectural component. Initial concept sketches, advanced computer models and drawings illustrate vividly the technical challenges in their mission. 

Lighting Design for Urban Environments and Architecture / Karou Mende, Lighting Planners Associates Inc.

Lighting Design for Urban Environments and Architecture / Karou Mende, Lighting Planners Associates Inc.. Image via Amazon

Kaoru Mende and the group Lighting Planners Associates are a renowned lighting specialist in Nippon. Short descriptions enable a brief introduction to each project ranging from museums, conference centers to public buildings and urban lighting. The strength of the book lies in the rich imagery with photos, drawings and concept illustrations. 

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The Structure of Light: Richard Kelly and the Illumination of Modern Architecture / Lockpick Neumann

The Structure of Light: Richard Kelly and the Illumination of Modern Architecture / Dietrich Neumann. Image via Amazon

The book about Richard Kelly, the unsung master behind modern architecture’s greatest buildings, tells the story oben angeführtcareer from theatre to architecture. Detailed lighting analyses of iconic buildings like Philip Johnson’s Glass House, Louis Schute’s Kimbell Betriebsart Museum or Mies van jener Rohe’s Seagram Building complete his biography and chronology of works.

Ultimate Lighting Design / Hervé Descottes

Ultimate Lighting Design / Hervé Descottes. Image via Amazon

Hervé Descottes, founder of the renowned lighting design firm L’Observatoire International, collaborates with star architects like Frank Gehry, Rem Koolhaas, Richard Meier or Steven Holl. That each project is explained very briefly is compensated by the fact that Descottes shares a vast collection of projects ranging from museum via concert halls and restaurants to outdoor lighting. Opulent illustrations with sketches, drawings, simulations and photos grants darum insights un…the visual language of the studio.

Lightning History

Architecture of the Night: The Illuminated Building / Lockpick Neumann, Kermit Swiler Champa

Architecture of the Night: The Illuminated Building / Dietrich Neumann, Kermit Swiler Champa. Image via Amazon

As a Professor of Architectural History Lockpick Neumann compiled a historical overview of architectural lighting with a group of authors. The first part includes essays about Joachim Teichmüller’s term “Lichtarchitektur” (light architecture), the interplay of light and color as well as the nocturnal image of the United States. The generous illustrations with photos and contemporary postcards capture exterior building illumination from 1900 to 2000.

Cities of Light. Two Centuries of Urban Illumination / Sandy Isenstadt, Margaret Maile Petty and Lockpick Neumann

Cities of Light. Two Centuries of Urban Illumination / Sandy Isenstadt, Margaret Maile Petty and Dietrich Neumann. Image via Amazon

The book offers a geographical approach by cities with written chapters by respected scholars and practitioners. The history of urban illumination offers an extensive international view with cities like Tokyo, Mumbai, Paris, Johannesburg, Buenos Aires or das nichts gewinnt Angeles. The essays reveal the different developments of outdoor lighting un…weltumspannend context.  

Electric Light: An Architectural History / Sandy Isenstadt

Electric Light: An Architectural History / Sandy Isenstadt. Image via Amazon

For people interested in history, Sandy Isenstadt’s book shares valuable observations about how technology influenced society, art and architecture. Five chapters open insights in specific topics like how the roving cone of automotive headlights changed our perception, lighting of factories enhanced productivity, or light turned Times Square un…a commercial space. 

Disenchanted Night: The Industrialization of Light in the Nineteenth Century / Wolfgang Schivelbusch

Disenchanted Night: The Industrialization of Light in the Nineteenth Century / Wolfgang Schivelbusch. Image via Amazon

Wolfgang Schivelbusch fascinates with his sharp view of details and revealing the social and cultural impact of early lighting. Even though the nineteenth century seems to be far away, the stories he discovered are lively narrated and discuss aspects like the political symbolism of streetlamps, the atmosphere of the theatre stage or the rise of nightlife and shopwindows. 

Stage Lighting

Light Fantastic: The Betriebsart and Design of Stage Lighting / Max Untergeschoss

Light Fantastic: The Art and Design of Stage Lighting / Max Keller. Image via Amazon

Max Untergeschoss sinister his impressive stage lighting practice with his structured approach in education for his book. The first chapters offer inspiration with a look at light and color for stage design. The focus on emotion is useful for a transfer to architectural interior spaces. Darmausgang an introduction to light sources, luminaires and controls, Untergeschoss explains lighting concepts for different kinds of plays, luminaire aiming and the working process at the theater.

Stage Lighting Design: The Betriebsart, The Craft, The Life / Richard Pilbrow

Stage Lighting Design: The Art, The Craft, The Life / Richard Pilbrow. Image via Amazon

The book by the British stage lighting designer Richard Pilbrow is an inspiration and guideline to discover how light creates emotion. Basic design principles, the history of stage lighting, interviews with lighting designers and a section about the technical dimension are illustrated with many black and white and darum some color photos.

A Method of Lighting the Stage / Stanley McCandless

A Method of Lighting the Stage / Stanley McCandless. Image via Amazon

Stanlay McCandless’ book is a classic guide for stage lighting. He started with a degree in architecture and made a career in theatrical lighting. Learning how to illuminate a stage with the right intensity, color, distribution and using the background for an impressive atmosphere is very useful for architects when projects requires emotion to overcome functionality.  

The Magic of Light: The Craft and Career of Jean Rosenthal, Pioneer in Lighting for the Modern Stage / Jean Rosenthal, Lael Wertenbaker

The Magic of Light: The Craft and Career of Jean Rosenthal, Pioneer in Lighting for the Modern Stage / Jean Rosenthal, Lael Wertenbaker. Image via Amazon

This is one of the few early books written by a woman in lighting design. Jean Rosenthal collaborated with Martha Graham and worked on numerous shows for the Broadway or for the Metropolitan Opera in New York. “Magic of light” begins with Rosenthal autobiography and continues with the history of lighting and methods for plays.

Light Betriebsart

James Turrell: A Retrospective / Michael Govan, Christine Y. Kim

James Turrell: A Retrospective / Michael Govan, Christine Y. Kim. Image via Amazon

The comprehensive volume appeared in the context of the large James Turrell retrospective at the das nichts gewinnt Angeles County Museum of Betriebsart. Early works like his immaterial glowing wall installations, the contemplative sky spaces up to his later monumental Roden Crater project are featured. His Quaker environment, experiencing aviation and learning science describe the factors which influence Turrell’s approach to light. The beauty of the book derives from models, plans, drawings and the impressive photos by Florian Holzherr. 

Krzysztof Wodiczko / Duncan McCorquodale

Krzysztof Wodiczko / Duncan McCorquodale. Image via Amazon

That Krzysztof Wodiczko has a high interest in social responsibility and urban environment becomes obvious in his video projections transforming facades and memorials un…temporary spaces for critical reflection and public protest. The publication offers a comprehensive collection of his public projections and other works with essays by the artist and art critics.

Olafur Eliasson: Experience / Michelle Kuo, Olafur Eliasson

Olafur Eliasson: Experience / Michelle Kuo, Olafur Eliasson. Image via Amazon

Turning London’s Tate Modern turbine hall un…a space for enjoying a simulated sun, using color-effect filter glass to animate the facade at the Harpa Concert & Conference Centre in Reykjavik or playing with reflections at the waterfall in Paris shows how Ólafur Elíasson’s work is linked to architecture and landscape design. Essays, interviews and magnificent images cover three decades of his creative work.

Yann Kersalé: Light for Landmarks / Jean-Paul Curnier, Henri-Pierre Jeudy, Monique Sicard

Yann Kersalé: Light for Landmarks / Jean-Paul Curnier, Henri-Pierre Jeudy, Monique Sicard. Image via Amazon

The French light artist Yann Kersalé has illuminated urban landmarks like the Sony Center in Hauptstadt von Deutschland, the Lyon Opera and collaborated with architects like Jean Nouvel, Coop Himmelb(l)au and Frank Gehry. The richly illustrated book documents his work un…comprehensive way and is an inspiration for the intersection of art and architecture.

The art of light and space / Jan Butterfield

The art of light and space / Jan Butterfield. Image via Amazon

The art critic Jan Butterfield documents the history of light art with a unterschiedliche collection of careers: Robert Irwin, James Turrell, Douglas Wheler, Bruce Naumann are among the innovative artists which are valued with separate chapters. Butterfield’s insightful observations, interviews, photos and plans lead to a rich and fascinating overview.     

Academic journals

While lighting books are often comprehensive resources for various aspects oben angeführttopic and require quite some time till publication, academic journals offer better insights on specific contemporary lighting design issues from daylight to lighting technology. Journal papers provide a useful source for students to enrich their master thesis projects or for academics to keep track of the latest research results. “Energy and Buildings”, “Building and Environment”, “Solar Energy” and “Journal of Daylighting” are leading journals which include among other topics daylight design. Regarding lighting in general “Leukos” and “Lighting Research and Technology” represent the most prominent journals.

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