Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Response to Light Revealing Experience

image courtesy of Horiki Architecture

Though light has various cultural meanings, most regard it as a liberating entity. Religiously and culturally we recognize light as a way out of plight. Most cultures are very structured with very deliberate class systems and architecture. Light is the eternity beyond order; the calm disorder that holds a balance. Light in architecture can be used to expand compressed spaces and provide grandeur to large spaces that capture it. Light can extend long corridors, providing a visual destination or focal glow. This type of space has a very distinct character or genius loci, due to the light and dark balance.

Light and color seem to serve a similar purpose both in categorizing space and complementing each other. Light in tandem with the colors/materials of a space establishes the genius loci. Materials are now manufactured for their color and textural qualities in unison with light.

Water elements in environmental design contain a sense of infinity as they not only reflect the sky but also provide a new interpretation through their ripples. Our attraction extends to observing ourselves in the water through a reverse reflection. Water is constantly changing and changing our environment. When an environment is in constant flux, it resists becoming dull. Life is connected to water; life is connected to light.

Trees provide a rhythm of dark and light through the silhouettes of vertical stalks as well as the filtering through leaves. Trees paint the ground with shadows that are exaggerated by surrounding pools of light. Courtyards within large structures seem to provide the same effect; an eternal light pool within the confines of a structure and roof.

The reading was also very revealing on how light is battled in warm climates while welcomed in cool climates. Regions to the north often have codes built into their architectural design that dictate a workspace’s connection to natural light and surroundings. Regions to the south must often employ special sheathing and window treatments to filter the light.