dpa were fortunate to collaborate with world renowned Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA) on The Opus by Omniyat, home to the new ME Dubai hotel, in the Burj Khalifa district in Dubai UAE.

For dpa, the project spanned several years from concept to completion with various interesting challenges to illuminate such a unique and complicated piece of architecture.

The building was conceived by Zaha Hadid back in 2007 and notable to the ZHA design was the balance between solid and void. The design represents two towers that have converged as one, to a cube with the centre ‘eroded’ to create a stunning and contrasting void. This void is an important volume and canvas for the lighting intervention and solution to the internal ‘skin’ of the building’s void.

dpa’s challenge was to develop a unique and visually interesting lighting scheme to compliment and enhance the architecture both inside and out. A critical design consideration was to ensure that the lighting equipment did not detract from or compromise the beautiful smooth flowing form of the internal void. Maintenance and energy were also important considerations as well as the infrastructure and integration into such an elegantly detailed façade.

dpa collaborated closely with ZHA and the other team members along with Vexica to develop a unique product to integrate seamlessly into the façade of the void. By day the building’s façade reflects its surroundings like a monumental mirrored sculpture; whilst at night, the void is transformed using 5,000 individually controllable 1.5W LED ‘points’ of light providing a sophisticated and dynamic lighting installation. Using DMX lighting control enabled unique tailoring of the content with the LED ‘pixels’ as a creative tool to paint with light across the inner void

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