Architects:   Axel Schultes Architekten, Berlin
Client:   Federal Republic of Germany, represented by the Bundesbaugesellschaft, Berlin
Occupant:   Government of the Federal Republic of Germany
Completion:   2001
Project size:   65,000 sqm
Overall building budget:   300 million euros
Lighting budget:   6 million euros
Photos:   Werner Huthmacher 2-4, 5r, 6
Ulrich Schwarz 1, 7
Stefan Müller 5l

Werkbericht - Licht Kunst Licht 1  >>


Creating a Seat of Government - The Federal Chancellery

The concept started with a vision: the vision architects had of an open, flowing space. "A space like a river- from the forum across the Cour d'honneur into the foyer, through the garden, across the river Spree towards the park", is how the architects described their project. The new seat of government in Berlin is oriented to the outside world- a building in which rooms open up, flow into one another, afford views inwards and outwards.

A comprehensive concept pulls together the various individual areas and functions of this large and fluid structure. The artificial illumination is an integral component of the architecture. The unifying quality of light is achieved through ceiling recessed luminaires. Downlights are adapted to specific functions by means of different reflectors, lamps and wattages, yet blend in unobtrusively with the spatial structure of rooms. They are principally perceptible through their effect.

Axel Schultes defines his vision as follows:" Architecture is depth, a sequence of layers, spatial volume." The lighting for the new seat of government in Berlin serves to reconcile disparate demands: the requirements of a creative sculptural architecture, the stipulations of official regulations, and the wishes of both client and user. The result is a fusion of the quality of architecture and the artificial illumination into a monument of transparency and openness.

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