Contemporary solutions for contemporary artworks

Zumtobel illuminates the Aïshti Foundation in Beirut

Since first appearing on the retail scene in 1989, Aïshti has grown from being a single high-end clothing store into a successful, globally recognised chain that offers a series of renowned luxury brands including Prada, Miu Miu, YSL, Dior, Marc Jacobs and Burberry. Today Aïshti is the undisputed market leader for fashion and luxury products in Lebanon.

After three years of construction, the 35,000-square-metre “Aïshti Foundation” has now opened its doors to the public. The complex, which is located in the Lebanese capital of Beirut, was designed by renowned architect David Adjaye and is dedicated to showcasing more than 2000 pieces of contemporary artwork from the private collection of Tony Salamé, CEO of Aïshti. Alongside an art gallery, the project also encompasses a range of retail units and leisure facilities.

Zumtobel created a distinctive lighting solution for the Aïshti Foundation. The retail outlets stretch over four floors with a large atrium in the middle. The coves on each floor and the escalators are illuminated with over 600 metres of TUNABLE cove, that has been custom made for the project. This LED chain creates beautiful linear accents that blend in perfectly with the dramatic architecture of the atrium. In addition, the colour temperature of the light lines can be adjusted between 3000 and 6500 Kelvin using the app-based LITECOM lighting management system.

TECTON LED and VIVO spotlights from Zumtobel illuminate the general areas of the shopping mall. Thanks to a split-lens concept, TECTON LED delivers uniform illumination and reduces the risk of perceived glare. Key functions such as power supply, lighting control and connection to the emergency lighting system are already integrated into the actual TECTON trunking. This makes it easy to simply add luminaires and exit signs to the trunking when and where they are required. The customised VIVO spotlights with double heads ensure a powerful, high-precision and uniform illumination of the hallways.

The shape of the building is a simple block that has been rotated on one edge, giving the impression that it has been tilted. The retail spaces have been installed around the atrium on one side of the block. The gallery, which can be found on the other side, is hosting an inaugural exhibition curated by Massimiliano Gioni and titled “New Skin”. This brings together a collection of more than 2000 pieces of art from the personal archive of Tony Salamé. SLOTLIGHT II LED and LINARIA provide the general lighting for the gallery, achieving a clean, linear design that extends throughout the entire application. The minimalistic ARCOS spotlight, designed by David Chipperfield, adds a special level of focus to the exhibition space. The sophisticated lighting technology enables varied objects to be perfectly highlighted with a light that is free from UV and IR radiation. The powerful PANOS evolution and CARDAN ranges play an important role in the corridor areas.

Thanks to the LITECOM lighting management system, the complete lighting solution of the Aïshti Foundation can be controlled to ensure the maximum combination of visual comfort and energy efficiency. The functions and dimensions of the LITECOM system can be configured to support effective management of individual rooms, several floors or the whole building. As well as using conventional momentary action switches, the lighting solution can be regulated via Zumtobel control units, smartphones, tablets and computers.

Owner: Tony Salamé

Architect: David Adjaye

Photographer: Guillaume Ziccarelli

Gallery lighting solution: ARCOS, LINARIA LED, SLOTLIGHT II LED, CARDAN, PANOS evolution

Shopping mall lighting solution: TECTON LED, VIVO, PURESIGN, LITECOM, TUNABLE cove