Lichtfries am Neubau des
iart ag, Design und Engineering
Valentin Spiess, Steffen Blunk, Oliver Heyerick, Lucien Iseli, Gordon Jaentsch
Christ & Gantenbein, Design und Architektur
Emanuel Christ, Christoph Gantenbein, Julia Tobler, Michael Bertschmann, Stephanie Hirschvogel
Ludovic Balland, Typografie
Multivision LED-Systeme GmbH (LED-Hardware),
ZPF Ingenieure AG (Bauingenieur)
Bau- und Verkehrsdepartement Basel-Stadt,
Städtebau & Architektur, Hochbauamt
The light frieze forms part of the new building of Kunstmuseum Basel – the Basel Fine Arts Museum –, which was formally opened in 2016. It consists of an LED-based light installation, in the form of a band 3 metres high and 115 metres long, which encircles the building at a height of 12 metres. By contrast with other media façades the frieze, which comes across as a symbiosis of stone and light, has an actual physical presence and constitutes an integral component of the architecture. Making a sophisticated use of the existing horizontal structure of joints, it projects a subtle display of texts and patterns onto the skin of the building, creating the impression of a fleeting play of light and shadow. The LEDs inserted in the joints cannot be seen from the street. They respond dynamically to the changing light situation in the course of the day. Conceived as a media membrane, the light frieze amounts, in both technological and aesthetic terms, to an extrapolation into the digital age of an architectural element that has been familiar since antiquity.
Comments of the nominators
Though limited in magnitude and range, this carefully developed and perfectly realised communication project represents a sculptural and technological achievement. The frieze transforms the façade of the museum into an effective communication medium capable of representing the living face of the institution.
Comments by the Jury