By Nick Caruso
Office for Visual Interaction produces legacy-worthy masterpieces illuminated by a rich narrative.
Founded in 1997, Office for Visual Interaction (OVI) is everything one might expect an architectural lighting design firm to be: endlessly creative, beyond thorough, professional in the extreme. The firm’s work – projects that dot the globe, done in conjunction with the world’s most famous architects for the world’s most powerful, popular, and advanced clients – stands as a testament to its unwavering commitment to quality and expertise.
Indeed, OVI’s work is as beautiful as it is unique, but its superlative lighting designs alone are not what makes OVI the intensely exceptional force it is today. What sets OVI apart is that the tight-knit team doesn’t consider themselves lighting designers at all.
The OVI team is a collective of philosophers, designers, and storytellers. Each massive retail space, soaring skyscraper, or sprawling technology complex is a new opportunity to communicate an idea. The team absorbs location-specific details, exacting technical specifications, textured facades–every factor and concept that forms the complete project – in order to divine the essence of the overall vision. OVI embraces that essence, distilling it and transmuting it into an iconic, emotional, and holistic expression of light.
That is the OVI philosophy. The company’s mission is to design and produce legacy-worthy masterpieces that radiate not just with light but with a rich narrative.
These narratives take into account not just the architect’s own vision but profound respect for and amplification of historical context. A principal focus of OVI’s design work is to reach into an area’s past as a means to inform how its final product will craft future history and cultural longevity. In each step of its process, OVI conducts a careful examination of local customs and heritage in order to thoroughly understand a project’s position in society and time.
Those ideals are then extruded through an innovative technological lens. In this way, the work meaningfully advances architectural stories while honouring and echoing the ideas of the past, memorialising and progressing the quintessence of a place, a people, an era.
Whether enriching a skyscraper’s facade with integrated, fluid lighting to echo its region’s natural resources or mirroring iconic, metropolitan aesthetics in emotional design cues, OVI’s lighting stories extract, refine and strengthen what makes any location exceptional.
To celebrate over a decade of bringing to life projects in China and throughout Asia, OVI is proud to publish a Chinese translation of its book Lighting Design & Process to supplement
the English edition. This vivid, illustrated record of its past work showcases global stories and local stories, public stories and intimate stories; stories of work and of play, stories of history
and of change. Each is brought to life with bold thinking and hidden logic, a sophisticated aesthetic, and a celebration of humanity. And there are always new stories to be told.
Click here to see the full text of OVI’s ‘The Story of Light’ by Nick Caruso in CEO Magazine in partnership with ‘Building the Future’ about Young Chiu of Foster + Partners.