A French lighting designer has claimed that he has not been fully paid for his work on one of Qatar’s most recognisable buildings.
Yann Kersalé has told Arabian Business that he came up with the lighting concept for the Burj Doha, but that his design was appropriated and poorly implemented by a German lighting specialist, Insta.
“We created the idea of the lights, we did the project on how to implement the system and everything,” Kersalé said. “The client didn’t see the value of having the artist on the ground till the very end so we were not paid for the full work. The German company called to implement our idea is now selling it as theirs.”
Kersalé has worked closely with Jean Nouvel, the main architect for the Burj Doha, on a series of major international projects.
The Frenchman said that the cost of a lighting scheme can range from between 5-10 percent of the total cost of the project, but that he did not receive a final fee for the “artistic visual programming”. In addition, Kersalé said that the outcome was not as good as it could have been.
“I can sign [off on] only 75 percent of the lights that you see today on the tower, not 100 percent because they decided to take our idea and implement it without our contribution. The orange is not right, there was supposed to be a golden effect but it isn’t there. The implementation was wrong and very poor,” he said.
“Doha is going to become a capital of the world and from the bottom of my heart I would like to give some advice: they won’t make the difference by doing a bigger light show than Dubai or Shanghai, but by doing it differently and with a stronger idea and personality,” Kersalé added.
When contacted by Arabian Business, Insta claimed that it had not signed any direct contracts with Kersalé.
“According to our knowledge, the owner and general contractor in charge of Burj Doha Project gave the order for a lighting design concept to French lighting designer, Mr Yann Kersalé,” said Alexander Wiepen, head of export at Insta.
“Following we got the order for the manufacturing and delivery of our customized instalight 1050 LED Façade Spots, the set-up of the lighting control system and the programming of individual light scenes also directly from the owner and general contractor. The complete LED Lighting System of Burj Doha was finalised then in late 2011.”
“At no time we had any direct contracts or other agreements with Mr Yann Kersalé,” Wiepen added. However, Kersalé’s name is mentioned on Insta’s website in association with the Burj Doha project.
“Based on our corporate policy we name in general architects, light planners or designers in our reference project publications as well as on our webpage,” Wiepen said.
The 232-metre Burj Doha is located in the city’s West Bay area. Last year, it was named the best tall building in the MENA region by the Chicago-based Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH).
Source: Arabian Business
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