The Foundation for Art and Building Culture wishes you a peaceful and contemplative Christmas and a good start to the New Year!

We are in an energy crisis, the German economy is heading into recession, inflation is high, a merciless war is raging in Ukraine – not to mention the effects of the ecological, political and social crisis in connection with man-made global warming. This is precisely why it is important to consciously save energy and switch off unnecessary artificial lights and high-consumption appliances. As a sign that the world’s crises concern us and that our actions have consequences. As a symbol that every little contribution counts.

But it is just as important to give people hope in these extraordinary and difficult times. Because we actually need more light in the world.

Why people need light in dark times

There are many festivals of light in different cultures: Christian Christmas, Jewish Hanukkah and Hindu Diwali. These festivals have a centuries-old tradition. Even in ancient Rome, the winter solstice was celebrated around this time. Nowadays, however, there are also other, less traditional light festivals or installations.

It is a very basic experience that light provides warmth

The Christmas season is traditionally also a time of lights. If we allow it, Advent is a cozy time – a time of reflection. We have illuminated the inside of the CUBITY Atelier House during the dark Advent and Christmas season – switching on a light as an inner and outer orientation. Because light is the source of life and means hope, warmth and health for us humans. Light allows us to be productive. It also gives us a sense of security. By illuminating our CUBITY, we are sending this hope out to people. This light in dark times should be an encouragement and joy for all citizens in Merzenich.

About the lighting concept

Viewed from the outside, the lighting concept of the CUBITY Atelier House creates two different scenarios, a daytime and a nighttime presentation. While the translucent outer skin appears three-dimensional during the day and does not allow any direct visual communication between the interior and exterior spaces, this is reversed in the evening and the interior can be experienced from the outside.

The artificial lighting concept, developed together with project partner Zumtobel, supports the additive design principle of CUBITY, which is based on the layering of the individual elements from the exterior facade to the interior residential cubes.

The focus of the lighting is on the market square in the center of the building, for which a “light island” made up of natural and artificial light was designed. Direct lighting from pendant lights hanging from the roof structure highlights the central communal area. We have installed particularly energy-conscious LED lighting in the CUBITY, which is designed to not have a noticeable impact on the energy balance. We produce our own electricity, heat and cooling for operation via our solar system and heat pump.

When we talk about what light we need, it is worth looking at the question of why these lights shine in the first place

The Foundation’s CUBITY Atelier House is not a public building, such as a town hall, a cultural institution or a monument, which may no longer be illuminated at night. The CUBITY interior lighting does not constitute exterior or Christmas lighting. There are no bans on lighting for the building under the Energy Safety Ordinance (EnSikuMaÄV). According to the Federal Ministry of Economics, the lighting ban in the energy crisis applies to the lighting of public buildings, but not to public non-residential buildings and monuments that are installed and operated on the occasion of traditional or religious festivals (such as Christmas) or illuminated or light-emitting advertising systems, the operation of which is prohibited from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. the following day. The particularly energy-conscious LED lighting, for example, shines through the translucent outer skin from the inside with a clear Christmas message, in compliance with all the given rules.

On behalf of the Foundation team, we would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the trust you have placed in us, the good cooperation and the respectful way we work together, and wish you a peaceful, healthy and happy New Year.

About the foundation

Art and architecture are existential components of everyday life and shape everyone’s environment. We have made it our mission to raise people’s awareness of this interplay. The Britta and Ulrich Findeisen Foundation for Art and Architecture is a non-profit foundation and has been committed to promoting education, monument preservation, art and building culture since its establishment in July 2007.

The Foundation is not geographically limited in its activities. To increase the effectiveness of the foundation’s funds, and also thanks to the local connection of the foundation’s founders, the measures focus on both internal and external projects according to the purpose of the foundation, which have their main focus of implementation in North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) or whose benefits lie for the supported people and institutions in NRW.