Skip to content

June 22, 2020

It is all about the process – Yunni Cho, BRDD 21′

by Yunni

Last week, my presentation for both Transient Stillness and Choreography of Light were successful, and everyone from Lighting Detectives agreed to collaborate on these projects. This week was about further developing my initial proposals to make the projects more cohesive. For the first project, Transient Stillness, I completed five additional hand drawings of daylight condition in Jeju Island, South Korea. Unlike previous drawings focused on the time of sunrise and sunset, this week’s drawings were made around the time of late-morning and early-evening. The addition of these new set of drawings allowed me to focus on the transitional moments of daylight and showed many different forms and shades. 

Along with these drawings, I made two time lapse videos in a similar format made by Ulrike Brandi last week in Hamburg, Germany. The first time lapse was made from around 4PM to 10PM and captured changes in sky and light conditions from late afternoon to sunset. The second video was made from around midnight to 7AM and captured changes during late evening and sunrise. Both of these videos were trials made as soon as the rainy season ended in South Korea. And I will be making more of these videos in different settings both in Jeju Island and Seoul to capture a variety of seasonal changes as well as environmental settings. My partners from Germany and Mexico will also be joining me by making more time lapses. Throughout the fellowship, we will be sharing all of our videos to observe and understand potential differences between time zones and geographical coordinates. 

For the second project, Choreography of Light, this week was about doing initial research and documenting a list of sources with relevant information, including books, journals, movies, and lectures. The initial list includes literature about the poetic nature of light, such as In Praise of Shadows by Junichiro Tanizaki, The Light on Things by Peter Zumthor, Silence and Light by Louis Kahn, and The Eyes of the Skin by Juhani Pallasmaa. I also included more of the classic architecture books focused on lighting design, such as The Art of Architectural Daylighting by Mary Guzowski, Light and Design by Gyorgy Kepes, and Lighting with Steven Holl by Hervae Descottes. A journal by Nurleawati Ab. Jalil et al. titled Environmental Color Impact upon Human Behavior will be a great addition to account for psychological and perceptual properties of lighting. In order to further understand the complexity of lighting design at an urban scale, I will be reading Twenty Minutes in Manhattan by Michael Sorkin and The Power of Place by Dolores Hayden. In addition to this list, I included the movie Playtime directed by Jacques Tati as an inspiration for my projects, as each scene was carefully constructed with clever framing and lighting to intensify colors and window reflections. Starting my project with these sources as a reference would give me more of a holistic view on lighting from many different points of view. 

Following the approach of the first chapter on the dark sky preservation, I did two additional chapters and photo analysis of interior lighting projects. The first project is on the Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art in Seoul, South Korea designed by Jean Nouvel, Mario Botta, and Rem Koolhaas. The second project is Kooperative Regionalleitstelle West office designed by Ulrike Brandi in Elmshorn, Germany. Through my analysis on these two projects, I wrote about the importance of light in architecture and adaptive reuse. For my written analysis, I referenced some of the literature from the list of sources including In Praise of Shadows by Junichiro Tanizaki, The Light on Things by Peter Zumthor, Silence and Light by Louis Kahn, The Art of Architectural Daylighting by Mary Guzowski, Light and Design by Gyorgy Kepes, Lighting with Steven Holl by Hervae Descottes, Twenty Minutes in Manhattan by Michael Sorkin, and The Power of Place by Dolores Hayden. 

In order to properly cite the sources and explain the process of my research, I wanted to make additional pages at the end of each chapter in more of a collage style. This follows the same format of my initial project proposal for Choreography of Light with two additional pages. I will be presenting this new format to Lighting Detectives and my partners in a couple days through a video call to discuss its graphic design and feasibility. Through the video call, we will also be discussing the content for new photo analysis and the correct order/ table of contents to make a logical transition between the chapters.

On June 18th of this week, I had the first Maharam check-in meeting with Kevin Jankowski, a director of RISD career center. Kevin and I mainly discussed what I accomplished so far as well as the changes to the fellowship. The meeting with Kevin was actually so much more helpful than I imagined. Verbally explaining and summarizing the first few weeks of my fellowship helped me understand the main takeaways and challenges ahead of my project. And also Kevin asked me a few clarifying questions, which made me look at my projects at a new angle. For instance, he asked me about the LUCIA project (mentioned in my second blog post) and how I think about the public-private partnership and the government’s involvement. This question was totally unexpected, as I didn’t realize the implication of working with a public organization in another country. Also Kevin asked me to explain the purpose of adding my hand drawings and photo analysis, which made me reflect on the importance of being more transparent in my design process and documenting changes that were made along with my reflections. 

Answering questions from Kevin made me realize some of the weak points of my projects that could be modified or challenged in another way. I will be sharing some of the things I learned through this meeting with the Lighting Detectives to discuss a better way to document our projects together. Moments like these truly show the fact that Maharam fellowship is all about the process more than the final outcomes. Already the project has been drastically changed from its initial proposal through the process of working with others in a virtual platform. But so much can be learned and valued in this process of receiving feedback, solving the problems, understanding potential implications, and coming up with an alternative plan. And I cannot wait to see how my projects would evolve by the time of my second and the last check-in meetings with Kevin.

%d bloggers like this: