Architectural Lighting

Christ Episcopal, Martinsville

Section Award - 1999 International Illumination Design Awards

The parish's interior renovations evolved from a dark and dimly-lit church. Lighting problems included no focus for the presentation areas (the pulpit, altar, and baptism font) and an overall poor illumination level in the nave. Specific tasks were: increasing general illumination levels; providing focused light for the presentation areas; and defining the form of the unique, octagonal room.

Along with the repainted interior, lighting brightens the space, revealing the stunning detail of crossing gothic and barrel vaults forming a Maltese cross. Lighting defines this form with light from a variety of sources and locations. Existing recessed fixtures were removed and replaced with eight recessed down-lights that provide general illumination. A parishioner designed and donated the new chandelier and wrought-iron sconces.

New, recessed, adjustable fixtures focus light into the chancel and around the altar. Low-voltage fixtures concealed behind the chancel arch, sidelight the altar, defining forms. Others also illuminate the chancel, as do two reused eyeball fixtures. A programmable dimming system controls all the lighting in the church.

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