An interplay of layers and curves



A circular event space was designed to encompass an installation that echoed its curves, and also defined it. Two spiral structures spanned the entire space, wall to wall, floor to ceiling, lending movement and energy, despite no moving parts. These variations on the circle—the perfect geometric figure with no end and no beginning—left guests transfixed in wonder of where space, itself, begins and where it ends.

Chandelier Redefined

A spiral platform served as a mount for the 2500 hanging cylinders created for this installation. It was constructed in several segments, each with two motors that allowed it to be securely lifted into place, forming the seamless spiral overhead.

The cylinders were designed and manufactured with custom specifications. Custom casting molds were constructed to create cylinders of varying diameters (8cm, 12cm and 15cm), and lengths ranging from 1m—4m, with 10cm increment differences within that range. The array of sizes generated was essential to creating a graduated and yet textured look as the cylinder lengths decreased and the installation ascended toward the spiral’s center.

Understanding materiality was crucial to creating the exact look for this component of the installation. A mix of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), a synthetic plastic polymer, and titanium, a lustrous metal, was carefully engineered then cast to form the cylinders that exuded a brighter white with the exact sheen desired for this structure.

A light was embedded inside every cylinder on the underside and capped with a translucent plexiglass that created soft, diffused lighting effects. At eye level, these appeared as bands of light that tipped the hanging pipes, but as the installation rose overhead, the same tips appeared in round form and transformed the pipes into beams of light, illuminating the center of the space.

Each cylinder’s placement was carefully calculated and every angle visualized with computational renderings before fabrication and installation. The result is an installation whose patterns appear indeterminable because cylinders with varying lengths were layered in every direction; with every movement, the eyes caught a different angle, yielding a different, yet familiar view.


How can a space evoke a feeling of being lost, being in wonder, and being familiar all at once?  A wall of hanging illuminated pipes—staggered with vertical and horizontal textures, changing sight lines—gradually elevates into aerial rays. With every slight movement, guests experience new views, discover vantage points, that evoke new perceptions. This installation plays with dimensionality, and along the way, guests are never bored, always looking, always curious. But through innovative design and detailed fabrication, simple lines and shapes resonate a familiarity, a balance without being predictable.


Event : 1000 guests

Date: 2011

Location: Maktoum Hall, Trade Center, Dubai

Creating Illuminate
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