In the Spotlight pix
Edie Cohen -- Interior Design, 3/1/2006 12:00:00 AM
Designer Lindy Roy and lighting designer Hervé Descottes check out their spa at André Balazs's Hotel QT in New York.
Fluorescent pocket lighting at Steven Holl Architects's Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma in Helsinki, Finland.
A glass-encased incandescent at Café Kiasma.
Steven Holl's watercolor for the Amsterdam office of real-estate developer Sarphatistraat.
Fluorescents reflected on colored surfaces in Sarphatistraat's windows.Roy and Descottes focusing his halogen ball at QT.
Floor lamps of stainless steel and watercolor paper for Richard Meier & Partners Architects's 66 restaurant in New York.
Halogen spots at Gehry Partners's arts center for Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York.
WHO: Hervé Descottes.
WHAT: Lighting that brings an artistic sensibility to international projects of every type and scope.
HOW: "Working with Lindy Roy is playful, like a good game."
Lighting design is intrinsically collaborative. When Hervé Descottes, a former electrical engineer, was living in Paris, he teamed up with some of the best and the brightest: Pei Cobb Freed & Partners for the Richelieu wing of the Musée du Louvre in Paris, Arquitectonica for the Banque de Luxembourg. In 1993, when the European economy took a nosedive, Descottes moved to New York and founded L'Observatoire International. Voilà.
"My world immediately expanded," Descottes says. Steven Holl Architects arrived first, with lighting projects at the Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma in Helsinki, Finland, and an office in Amsterdam. Soon after, Gehry Partners called, as did Richard Meier & Partners Architects.
Four André Balazs hotels got the Descottes touch, too—including the Hotel QT, where he was paired with Roy Co.'s Lindy Roy. In the lobby, which is dominated by a 20-foot-square swimming pool, Descottes infusued mystery with recessed incandescents that darken as night falls. Needless to say, the project made quite a splash.