Architect Thierry Van de Wyngaert and lighting designer François Migeon, a founding partner of 8’18’’, first met 20 years ago on a project that set a seemingly impossible challenge – to build a water tower no one would notice. Light would be the starting point of their relationship, as the solution they chose was to stand the notion on its head by showing off the structure, magnifying it and lighting it so it appears lighter and blends into the landscape.
The Poetry of Light exhibition presents the projects they have worked on together since then and shows the parallels that light has drawn between their careers. In doing so, the exhibition celebrates the moment when architecture receives its most beautiful raw material, light, a beacon to those who are lost and a trigger of emotions. Poetry of Light takes the visitor on a kinetic journey from day to night, contrasting the soft hues of natural light with the warm tones of artificial illumination. Thierry Van de Wyngaert wanted to work with François Migeon because he is part of a generation of designers that, in recent years, has brought light into the heart of cities, helping transform the way the urban environment is used. «We sleep an hour less than our parents. Night now occupies a major place in our lifestyles and the urban night is put to different uses. Architecture helps reveal this new urban space. Today, light is one of the most important materials for changing the way cities are seen.»
The architect has also called upon a group of young Vietnamese photographers, inviting them to present their vision of the city via images of “Urban life / Human life”. The result is a truly poetic exchange between France and Vietnam. Whatever the distance, we are living in the same age, so there is no barrier to bringing together those who believe in architecture as a repository of hope for “living together” and as a means of accessing the shifting ways of the world.
A issue of We Archi dedicated to Thierry Van de Wyngaert will be published on the occasion of the exhibition.