IALD 100 Watt Challenge Lights Entire House

IALD UK hosted the IALD 100 Watt Challenge at the House Next Door in Stoke Newington, London from 3-7 March 2014. Five of the UK’s top architectural lighting design firms put their creative schemes on display during the week-long IALD 100W Challenge. In its second year, the event was organized by IALD UK Projects Manager Emma Cogswell, Associate IALD, Stuart Knox of Architectural FX, and Simon Thorp of LAPD.

It’s not just a snappy title; the 100W Challenge asks teams of architectural lighting designers to light a house comprising six rooms and four different levels using a maximum of 100W of LED light tape. One hundred Watts isn’t just a random number; until relatively recently, it was commonplace to use a 100W light “”bulb”” in every room of a house. Now designers are able to light an entire house with just that wattage, and it’s not all about suspending light from the central point in the ceiling, as each of the five teams demonstrated with creativity and flair.



BDP transformed the house into a grisly display of the seven deadly sins, man’s worst attributes, utilizing the medium of light. For those of you who can’t remember, the sins are: pride, greed, envy, gluttony, lust, sloth and wrath. Using gels to colour the LED strips and numerous props the rooms were thoroughly transformed. One particularly ingenious solution: gluttony used 20 boxes of Quality Street chocolates with the wrappers acting as filters.Watts used: 100W



Using computer games as their inspiration, the team from DPA created “”Half Light,”” an apocalyptic house with rooms transformed into information centres, chill-out spaces and a mission control. Complete with masked accomplices, the house was on lock down.
Watts used: 97.44



Taking a more literal approach to fulfilling a client brief, Light Bureau drew from some of lighting’s design classics and gave them a new twist, providing light to complete some of the domestic tasks associated with home. The agility of the light tape meant that Light Bureau were able to recreate one of the most popular floor lamps ever made, Achille Castiglioni’s Arco Lamp, along with other instantly recognisable designs. These style icons provided functional light to read and plenty of ambient light within the space whilst also enhancing the texture on the walls. Other design classics included echoes of Dan Flavin’s Empire State.
Watts used: 91.64W



Using inspiration from nature, GIA worked the seasons using the colour and texture of the building to create emotion. Their inspiration was a young ballerina who is daydreaming about the cycle of life while she is dancing to Vivaldi’s 4 Seasons, and the house exists only in her dreams.
Anything is possible in this house, and the spaces are quite surreal. The upper room stands for autumn, and the rooms below for summer and spring. Time is accelerated and keeps changing on the stairs, while the dining room is a timeless space. The room below the dining room is a cold winter scene.
Watts used: 88.45W



Reflecting on the heyday of the silver screen, Paul Nulty’s studio relished in the historical nature of the building and built a story around the journey through the house. Each room was lit dramatically, providing clues and creating a sinister mystery around what would happen next.  At the top of the house, the end result was unexpected.
Watts used: 93.75W
All photos of the 100W challenge are by Alex Trylski Photography and Tom Niven. The IALD 100W Challenge would not have been possible without the patient support of the sponsors and their technicians:


15 Apr