eL Masterpiece - Daniel Libeskind Designs Limited-Edition Chandelier for Zumtobel

eL Masterpiece: Daniel Libeskind Designs Limited-Edition Chandelier for Zumtobel

Studio Daniel Libeskind unveiled the first lighting design by founding architect Daniel Libeskind. Created in collaboration with Austrian lighting company Zumtobel, the limited-edition eL Masterpiece chandelier is distinguished by its striking design and sophisticated technology.

Daniel Libeskind's eL Masterpiece chandelier is roughly nine feet tall and two-and-a-half feet wide. It weighs 350 pounds. A luminous, sharp-edged, cascading shape, the chandelier has a highly-polished stainless steel exterior and a stainless-and-23-carat-gold-plated-leaf interior.

Illumination is provided by 1,680 specially designed LED modules that have the ability to create seven color scenarios. The scenarios can be called up wirelessly via a special iPad app that activates individual built-in mechanisms attached to each module (LEDs are usually controlled by a single external mechanism).

The dynamic lighting owes its existence to a complex algorithim developed by Dr. Noam Libeskind, a son of Daniel Libeskind and an astrophysicist at the Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam. The formula uses the LEDs to tell the story of how light came into being, with each LED module representing a small volume of outer space after the Big Bang and the subsequent expansion of the universe.

The idea is based on the theory that galaxies like the Milky Way, the building blocks of our roughly 14 billion-year-old universe, grew larger and larger as the universe aged. With increased size came changes in the quality of the light emitted by the galaxies' stars. By running state-of-the-art simulations on massive super-computers, Dr. Libeskind was able to compress one billion years into a single second so that, in effect, the eL's time loop plays back the history of the cosmos in 14 seconds.

The chandelier, which made its debut at Art Basel Miami Beach December 1-4, is only the fourth in Zumbotel's Masterpiece series of stylistically and technically innovative designs by leading creative figures. The other Masterpieces are Starbrick (2009), by Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson; VorteXX (2005), by British architect Zaha Hadid; and the LQ-P-Chandelier (2005), by New York architect and artist Hani Rashid.

Studio Daniel Libeskind