by Anmol AhujaSep 09, 2021
The 38th Annual IALD International Lighting Design Awards returned with an online event on June 24, 2021, assembling design luminaries from all across the world as it honoured 20 exceptional projects that represented the best in lighting design over the past year. As the second digital event held by the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD) in the wake of pandemic-induced restrictions, the design awards were presented by US-based Cooper Lighting Solutions.
Counted among the most prestigious international accolades in lighting design, the IALD Awards are also one of the longest running programs within this sphere. Since its establishment in Chicago, USA, back in 1969, IALD has strived to draw attention to the vital role played by light in human lives while recognising excellence in lighting design and supporting a network of more than 1,500 professionals that have met its stringent standards of accreditation. The IALD Awards serve as an extension of this purpose, in the form of a dedicated event that commemorates exemplary lighting design projects in the domains of architecture, interior design, memorials, hospitality design, retail design, hospitals, and places of worship.
IALD Awards Chair, Mirjam Roos, shared her thoughts on the event in an official statement: “Every year we see an increase in the quality of entries and this year is certainly no different. […] Our seven-member panel of judges evaluated each project submission for demonstration of excellence across ten distinct areas in a rigorous and blind process.”
This jury included Julia Hartmann of Lightsphere (Zurich), Yahui Cheng of Light Poetic based in Melbourne and Taipei, Kristen Garibaldi of Arup (New York), interior and experiential designer Joe Lawton of Chicago-based Media Objectives, architect Tina Turrisi of HDR (Sydney), Vladan Paunovic of Ramboll (Copenhagen), and Glenn Heinmiller of Lam Partners (Cambridge, Massachusetts).
During the event, the winners were announced by a duo of presenters consisting of 2020-2021 IALD President Douglas Leonard, as well as IALD Awards Chair Mirjam Roos. The 20 awardees were separated into four categories with respect to their point scores as determined by the judging panel. Firstly, IALD Special Citations were awarded to Expolight for the Boulevard of Arts in Dnipro, Ukraine, and the K11 Art and Cultural Centre in Hong Kong with lighting design by Speirs Major.
Following this, 13 projects were presented with the IALD Award of Merit, including three awards for Schuler Shook within this bracket for 25 East Washington Lobby in Chicago, the 600 West Chicago Lobby Renovation, and The David H. Koch Center for Cancer Care at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. L’Observatoire International based in New York, were cited for their work on the Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial in Washington D.C. while Lighting Planners Associates, and Lighting Design International took home Awards of Merit for Takanawa Gateway Station in Tokyo and Harrods Fine Dining in London respectively.
Office for Visual Interaction(OVI) received the IALD Award of Excellence for the committee rooms of the Canadian Parliament’s west block in Ottawa, Canada. The lighting design for the Central Mosque in Shali, Russia by independent lighting designers Natalya Koptseva and Vasily Tarasenko was also honoured with an Award of Excellence, alongside Light Bureau’s Kungsträdgården in Stockholm, Sweden, and Lux Populi’s NorthConnex in Sydney, Australia. All the projects felicitated within this category exhibited great technical articulation and aesthetic sensibilities.
The ceremony’s highest accolade - the IALD Radiance Award - was presented to Sirius Lighting Office Inc. for Toranomon Hills Business Tower in Tokyo. Before the big reveal, a short segment bid farewell to IALD CEO Marsha Turner, who was in the process of stepping down from the post she had helmed for 18 years. The interlude featured clips of previous IALD Presidents and executives congratulating Turner for her efforts in transforming IALD into the thriving organisation it is today.
Revealing a diversity of approaches and innovations, this year’s IALD winners offer a moving reminder of the power of light in enriching human lives, while illuminating the continued advancement of the field of lighting design.
The IALD Awards online event can be viewed here.