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    Farhad Rahim

    Lighting design provided me with the opportunity to amalgamate both my engineering knowledge and creative abilities. This formed the basis to expand my design.”

    By Denise Close, Jean-Luc Wittersheim
    Farhad Rahim


    A lighting designer blends artistic talents with engineering capability, according to engineer and artist Farhad Rahim, Associate Director at Buro Happold. Effective lighting must create optimal conditions for socialization, professional efficiency and environmental performance.

    What is your background and evolution into lighting design?

    My career began as an electrical design draftsman and I progressed, studying electrical engineering and electronics, to become a senior electrical engineer. I longed to embrace my creative background in arts, so I used to run parallel courses in the evening, studying fine arts, screen printing and illustration. My initial approach to lighting was gaining in-depth knowledge of principles, standards and technical requirements. Lighting design provided me with the opportunity to amalgamate both my engineering knowledge and creative abilities. This formed the basis to expand my design. We've been researching the broader elements of lighting to include understanding of human behavior and reactions to light's melatonin levels, temperatures and intensities.

     

    How do you integrate light and lighting design in your projects?

    One key element is to create an environment suitable for use and consideration of people who use the space. Integrating light also needs to complement architecture to create a visual language. Understanding lighting principles assisted me to embrace broader elements: understanding human behavior, the significance of lighting on our environment, social, environmental and ecological considerations and the exploration of visual perception. 

     

    Which three of your projects are the most significant and/or interesting?

    ME Hotel: A great concept and like-minded approach to lighting requirements, leading to seamless integration of the lighting within the architecture and compliant with the visual languages. 

     

    The London Olympic Velodrome: A meticulous level of details and co-ordination to enable the lighting to be an integral part of the architecture. One of the most enlightening projects to work on.

     

    LSE Saw Swee Hock Student Centre: Working with O’Donnell Tuomey, using their architectural language to form part of the architectural langue in order to obtain the required levels of illumination and visual comfort. 

    One Angel Square, Manchester, UK - Lighting Design: Buro Happold - 3D Reid, BAM © Trevor Palin
    One Angel Square, Manchester, UK - Lighting Design: Buro Happold - 3D Reid, BAM © Trevor Palin

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